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Sample records for change enhances cognitive

  1. Environmental change enhances cognitive abilities in fish.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Kotrschal

    Full Text Available Flexible or innovative behavior is advantageous, especially when animals are exposed to frequent and unpredictable environmental perturbations. Improved cognitive abilities can help animals to respond quickly and adequately to environmental dynamics, and therefore changing environments may select for higher cognitive abilities. Increased cognitive abilities can be attained, for instance, if environmental change during ontogeny triggers plastic adaptive responses improving the learning capacity of exposed individuals. We tested the learning abilities of fishes in response to experimental variation of environmental quality during ontogeny. Individuals of the cichlid fish Simochromis pleurospilus that experienced a change in food ration early in life outperformed fish kept on constant rations in a learning task later in life--irrespective of the direction of the implemented change and the mean rations received. This difference in learning abilities between individuals remained constant between juvenile and adult stages of the same fish tested 1 y apart. Neither environmental enrichment nor training through repeated neural stimulation can explain our findings, as the sensory environment was kept constant and resource availability was changed only once. Instead, our results indicate a pathway by which a single change in resource availability early in life permanently enhances the learning abilities of animals. Early perturbations of environmental quality may signal the developing individual that it lives in a changing world, requiring increased cognitive abilities to construct adequate behavioral responses.

  2. How cognitive enhancement can change our duties

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    Filippo eSantoni de Sio

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This theoretical paper draws the scientific community’s attention to how pharmacological cognitive enhancement may impact on society and law. Namely, if safe, reliable, and effective techniques to enhance mental performance are eventually developed, then this may under some circumstances impose new duties onto people in high-responsibility professions – e.g. surgeons or pilots – to use such substances to minimize risks of adverse outcomes or to increase the likelihood of good outcomes. By discussing this topic, we also hope to encourage scientists to bring their expertise to bear on this current public debate.

  3. Cognitive Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... decline tend to occur in parallel as the disease progresses. Significant cognitive impairment in PD is often associated with: Caregiver distress Worse day-to-day function Diminished quality of life Poorer treatment outcomes Greater medical costs due to ...

  4. Cognitive Change and Enhanced Coping: Missing Mediational Links in Cognitive Behavior Therapy with Anxiety-Disordered Children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.J.M. Prins; T.H. Ollendick

    2003-01-01

    In this review, we examine the recent cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) outcome literature with anxiety-disordered children and, specifically, explore the status of cognitive change and increased coping ability as (1) specific treatment effects, and (2) possible mediators of the efficacy of CBT. In t

  5. Sleep for cognitive enhancement

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    Susanne eDiekelmann

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Sleep is essential for effective cognitive functioning. Loosing even a few hours of sleep can have detrimental effects on a wide variety of cognitive processes such as attention, language, reasoning, decision making, learning and memory. While sleep is necessary to ensure normal healthy cognitive functioning, it can also enhance performance beyond the boundaries of the normal condition. This article discusses the enhancing potential of sleep, mainly focusing on the domain of learning and memory. Sleep is known to facilitate the consolidation of memories learned before sleep as well as the acquisition of new memories to be learned after sleep. According to a widely held model this beneficial effect of sleep relies on the neuronal reactivation of memories during sleep that is associated with sleep-specific brain oscillations (slow oscillations, spindles, ripples as well as a characteristic neurotransmitter milieu. Recent research indicates that memory processing during sleep can be boosted by (i cueing memory reactivation during sleep, (ii stimulating sleep-specific brain oscillations, and (iii targeting specific neurotransmitter systems pharmacologically. Olfactory and auditory cues can be used, for example, to increase reactivation of associated memories during post-learning sleep. Intensifying neocortical slow oscillations (the hallmark of slow wave sleep by electrical or auditory stimulation and modulating specific neurotransmitters such as noradrenaline and glutamate likewise facilitates memory processing during sleep. With this evidence in mind, this article concludes by discussing different methodological caveats and ethical issues that should be considered when thinking about using sleep for cognitive enhancement in everyday applications.

  6. Cognitive diversity and moral enhancement.

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    Gyngell, Chris; Easteal, Simon

    2015-01-01

    One debate in contemporary bioethics centers on whether the development of cognitive enhancement technologies (CETs) will hasten the need for moral enhancement. In this article we provide a new argument in favor of pursuing these enhancement technologies together. The widespread availability of CETs will likely increase population-level cognitive diversity. Different people will choose to enhance different aspects of their cognition, and some won't enhance themselves at all. Although this has the potential to be beneficial for society, it could also result in harms as people become more different from one another. Aspects of our moral psychology make it difficult for people to cooperate and coordinate actions with those who are very different from themselves. These moral failings could be targeted by moral enhancement technologies, which may improve cooperation among individuals. Moral enhancement technologies will therefore help society maximize the benefits, and reduce the costs, associated with widespread access to cognitive enhancements.

  7. Is caffeine a cognitive enhancer?

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    Nehlig, Astrid

    2010-01-01

    The effects of caffeine on cognition were reviewed based on the large body of literature available on the topic. Caffeine does not usually affect performance in learning and memory tasks, although caffeine may occasionally have facilitatory or inhibitory effects on memory and learning. Caffeine facilitates learning in tasks in which information is presented passively; in tasks in which material is learned intentionally, caffeine has no effect. Caffeine facilitates performance in tasks involving working memory to a limited extent, but hinders performance in tasks that heavily depend on working memory, and caffeine appears to rather improve memory performance under suboptimal alertness conditions. Most studies, however, found improvements in reaction time. The ingestion of caffeine does not seem to affect long-term memory. At low doses, caffeine improves hedonic tone and reduces anxiety, while at high doses, there is an increase in tense arousal, including anxiety, nervousness, jitteriness. The larger improvement of performance in fatigued subjects confirms that caffeine is a mild stimulant. Caffeine has also been reported to prevent cognitive decline in healthy subjects but the results of the studies are heterogeneous, some finding no age-related effect while others reported effects only in one sex and mainly in the oldest population. In conclusion, it appears that caffeine cannot be considered a ;pure' cognitive enhancer. Its indirect action on arousal, mood and concentration contributes in large part to its cognitive enhancing properties.

  8. Improving temporal cognition by enhancing motivation.

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    Avlar, Billur; Kahn, Julia B; Jensen, Greg; Kandel, Eric R; Simpson, Eleanor H; Balsam, Peter D

    2015-10-01

    Increasing motivation can positively impact cognitive performance. Here we employed a cognitive timing task that allows us to detect changes in cognitive performance that are not influenced by general activity or arousal factors such as the speed or persistence of responding. This approach allowed us to manipulate motivation using three different methods; molecular/genetic, behavioral and pharmacological. Increased striatal D2Rs resulted in deficits in temporal discrimination. Switching off the transgene improved motivation in earlier studies, and here partially rescued the temporal discrimination deficit. To manipulate motivation behaviorally, we altered reward magnitude and found that increasing reward magnitude improved timing in control mice and partially rescued timing in the transgenic mice. Lastly, we manipulated motivation pharmacologically using a functionally selective 5-HT2C receptor ligand, SB242084, which we previously found to increase incentive motivation. SB242084 improved temporal discrimination in both control and transgenic mice. Thus, while there is a general intuitive belief that motivation can affect cognition, we here provide a direct demonstration that enhancing motivation, in a variety of ways, can be an effective strategy for enhancing temporal cognition. Understanding the interaction of motivation and cognition is of clinical significance since many psychiatric disorders are characterized by deficits in both domains.

  9. Cognitive enhancement. Effort of definition, and methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Artur Gunia

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The idea of cognitive enhancement refers to multifaceted and interdisciplinary approach aimed at improving human mental processes. Cognitive enhancement is the amplification or extension of core mind capacities through improvement or augmentation of either internal or external information processing systems. This includes improvements of intelligence and attention, reinforcement of creativity and memory, or extension of perception range. The main feature of cognitive enhancement is voluntariness of use for overcoming natural mental limitations. This article is a synthesis of current trends in cognitive enhancement from the perspective of transhumanism. The article presents various definitions of cognitive enhancement, methods of cognitive enhancement (biotechnological methods, non-pharmacological methods, IT methods as well as challenges and questions concerning improving human mental processes.

  10. Non Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers - Current Perspectives.

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    Sachdeva, Ankur; Kumar, Kuldip; Anand, Kuljeet Singh

    2015-07-01

    Cognition refers to the mental processes involved in thinking, knowing, remembering, judging, and problem solving. Cognitive dysfunctions are an integral part of neuropsychiatric disorders as well as in healthy ageing. Cognitive Enhancers are molecules that help improve aspects of cognition like memory, intelligence, motivation, attention and concentration. Recently, Non Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers have gained popularity as effective and safe alternative to various established drugs. Many of these Non Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers seem to be more efficacious compared to currently available Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers. This review describes and summarizes evidence on various Non Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers such as physical exercise, sleep, meditation and yoga, spirituality, nutrients, computer training, brain stimulation, and music. We also discuss their role in ageing and different neuro-psychiatric disorders, and current status of Cochrane database recommendations. We searched the Pubmed database for the articles and reviews having the terms 'non pharmacological and cognitive' in the title, published from 2000 till 2014. A total of 11 results displayed, out of which 10 were relevant to the review. These were selected and reviewed. Appropriate cross-references within the articles along with Cochrane reviews were also considered and studied.

  11. It's complicated: The relation between cognitive change procedures, cognitive change, and symptom change in cognitive therapy for depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo-Luaces, Lorenzo; German, Ramaris E; DeRubeis, Robert J

    2015-11-01

    Many attempts have been made to discover and characterize the mechanisms of change in psychotherapies for depression, yet no clear, evidence-based account of the relationship between therapeutic procedures, psychological mechanisms, and symptom improvement has emerged. Negatively-biased thinking plays an important role in the phenomenology of depression, and most theorists acknowledge that cognitive changes occur during successful treatments. However, the causal role of cognitive change procedures in promoting cognitive change and alleviating depressive symptoms has been questioned. We describe the methodological and inferential limitations of the relevant empirical investigations and provide recommendations for addressing them. We then develop a framework within which the possible links between cognitive procedures, cognitive change, and symptom change can be considered. We conclude that cognitive procedures are effective in alleviating symptoms of depression and that cognitive change, regardless of how it is achieved, contributes to symptom change, a pattern of findings that lends support to the cognitive theory of depression.

  12. Enhancement stimulants: perceived motivational and cognitive advantages

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    Irena P. Ilieva

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Psychostimulants like Adderall and Ritalin are widely used for cognitive enhancement by people without ADHD, although the empirical literature has shown little conclusive evidence for effectiveness in this population. This paper explores one potential explanation of this discrepancy: the possibility that the benefit from enhancement stimulants is at least in part motivational, rather than purely cognitive. We review relevant laboratory, survey and interview research and present the results of a new survey of enhancement users with the goal of comparing perceived cognitive and motivational effects. These users perceived stimulant effects on motivationally-related factors, especially energy and motivation, and reported motivational effects to be at least as pronounced as cognitive effects, including effects on "attention."

  13. Applications Software as Cognitive Enhancers.

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    Lambrecht, Judith J.

    1993-01-01

    Discusses the use of microcomputer applications software in education, reviews the literature involving studies on the development of problem-solving skills and on the instructional use of spreadsheets, and describes a project for secondary school students using spreadsheets that provides cognitive support. (Contains 35 references.) (LRW)

  14. Cognitive enhancers for anxiety disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hofmann, S.G.; Smits, J.A.J.; Asnaani, A.; Gutner, C.A.; Otto, M.W.

    2011-01-01

    Cognitive-behavioral therapy is an effective intervention for anxiety disorders. However, a significant number of people do not respond or only show partial response even after an adequate course of the treatment. Recent research has shown that the efficacy of the intervention can be improved by the

  15. Policy implications of technologies for cognitive enhancement

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    Sarewitz, Daniel R. (Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ); Karas, Thomas H.

    2007-02-01

    The Advanced Concepts Group at Sandia National Laboratory and the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes at Arizona State University convened a workshop in May 2006 to explore the potential policy implications of technologies that might enhance human cognitive abilities. The group's deliberations sought to identify core values and concerns raised by the prospect of cognitive enhancement. The workshop focused on the policy implications of various prospective cognitive enhancements and on the technologies/nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive science--that enable them. The prospect of rapidly emerging technological capabilities to enhance human cognition makes urgent a daunting array of questions, tensions, ambitions, and concerns. The workshop elicited dilemmas and concerns in ten overlapping areas: science and democracy; equity and justice; freedom and control; intergenerational issues; ethics and competition; individual and community rights; speed and deliberations; ethical uncertainty; humanness; and sociocultural risk. We identified four different perspectives to encompass the diverse issues related to emergence of cognitive enhancement technologies: (1) Laissez-faire--emphasizes freedom of individuals to seek and employ enhancement technologies based on their own judgment; (2) Managed technological optimism--believes that while these technologies promise great benefits, such benefits cannot emerge without an active government role; (3) Managed technological skepticism--views that the quality of life arises more out of society's institutions than its technologies; and (4) Human Essentialism--starts with the notion of a human essence (whether God-given or evolutionary in origin) that should not be modified. While the perspectives differ significantly about both human nature and the role of government, each encompasses a belief in the value of transparency and reliable information that can allow public discussion and

  16. Life Extension Factor Klotho Enhances Cognition

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    Dena B. Dubal

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Aging is the primary risk factor for cognitive decline, an emerging health threat to aging societies worldwide. Whether anti-aging factors such as klotho can counteract cognitive decline is unknown. We show that a lifespan-extending variant of the human KLOTHO gene, KL-VS, is associated with enhanced cognition in heterozygous carriers. Because this allele increased klotho levels in serum, we analyzed transgenic mice with systemic overexpression of klotho. They performed better than controls in multiple tests of learning and memory. Elevating klotho in mice also enhanced long-term potentiation, a form of synaptic plasticity, and enriched synaptic GluN2B, an N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR subunit with key functions in learning and memory. Blockade of GluN2B abolished klotho-mediated effects. Surprisingly, klotho effects were evident also in young mice and did not correlate with age in humans, suggesting independence from the aging process. Augmenting klotho or its effects may enhance cognition and counteract cognitive deficits at different life stages.

  17. Cognitive Status and Change among Iowa Centenarians

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    Margrett, Jennifer A.; Hsieh, Wen-Hua; Heinz, Melinda; Martin, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Equivocal evidence exists regarding the degree of cognitive stability and prevalence of cognitive impairment in very late life. The objective of the current study was to examine mental status performance and change over time within a sample of Iowa centenarians. The baseline sample consisted of 152 community-dwelling and institutionalized…

  18. Cultural Change, Human Activity, and Cognitive Development

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    Gauvain, Mary; Munroe, Robert L.

    2012-01-01

    Differential cognitive performance across cultural contexts has been a standard result in comparative research. Here we discuss how societal changes occurring when a small-scale traditional community incorporates elements from industrialized society may contribute to cognitive development, and we illustrate this with an analysis of the cognitive…

  19. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Motivational Enhancement Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Sarah S; Schoenfelder, Erin; Hsiao, Ray Chih-Jui

    2016-10-01

    Although cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is widely recognized as the preferred treatment of psychiatric disorders, less is known about the application of CBT to substance use disorders, particularly in adolescence. This article discusses how CBT conceptualizes substance use and how it is implemented as a treatment of adolescent substance abuse. The article draws on several manuals for CBT that implement it as a standalone treatment or in combination with motivational enhancement therapies. Also reviewed are several studies that examined the efficacy of CBT. Finally, the implications are discussed. Numerous starting resources are provided to help a clinician implement CBT.

  20. A Survey of Substance Use for Cognitive Enhancement by University Students in the Netherlands

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    Kimberly Johanna Schelle

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Background:Pharmacological cognitive enhancement, using chemicals to change cellular processes in the brain in order to enhance one’s cognitive capacities, is an often discussed phenomenon. The prevalence among Dutch university students is unknown.Methods:The study set out to achieve the following goals: (1 give an overview of different methods in order to assess the prevalence of use of prescription, illicit and lifestyle drugs for cognitive enhancement (2 investigate whether polydrug use and stress have a relationship with cognitive enhancement substance use (3 assessing opinions about cognitive enhancement prescription drug use. A nationwide survey was conducted among 1572 student respondents of all government supported Dutch universities. Results:The most detailed level of analysis ─ use of specific substances without a prescription and with the intention of cognitive enhancement ─ shows that prescription drugs, illicit drugs and lifestyle drugs are respectively used by 1.7%, 1.3% and 45.6% of the sample. The use of prescription drugs and illicit drugs is low compared to other countries. We have found evidence of polydrug use in relation to cognitive enhancement. A relation between stress and the use of lifestyle drugs for cognitive enhancement was observed. We report the findings of several operationalizations of cognitive enhancement drug use to enable comparison with a wider variety of previous and upcoming research.Conclusions:Results of this first study among university students in the Netherlands revealed a low prevalence of cognitive enhancement drug use compared to other countries. Multiple explanations, such as a difference in awareness of pharmacological cognitive enhancement among students, accessibility of drugs in the student population and inclusion criteria of enhancement substances are discussed. We urge enhancement researchers to take the different operationalizations and their effects on the prevalence numbers into

  1. Laterality enhances cognition in Australian parrots.

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    Magat, Maria; Brown, Culum

    2009-12-01

    Cerebral lateralization refers to the division of information processing in either hemisphere of the brain and is a ubiquitous trait among vertebrates and invertebrates. Given its widespread occurrence, it is likely that cerebral lateralization confers a fitness advantage. It has been hypothesized that this advantage takes the form of enhanced cognitive function, potentially via a dual processing mechanism whereby each hemisphere can be used to process specific types of information without contralateral interference. Here, we examined the influence of lateralization on problem solving by Australian parrots. The first task, a pebble-seed discrimination test, was designed for small parrot species that feed predominately on small seeds, which do not require any significant manipulation with the foot prior to ingestion. The second task, a string-pull problem, was designed for larger bodied species that regularly use their feet to manipulate food objects. In both cases, strongly lateralized individuals (those showing significant foot and eye biases) outperformed less strongly lateralized individuals, and this relationship was substantially stronger in the more demanding task. These results suggest that cerebral lateralization is a ubiquitous trait among Australian parrots and conveys a significant foraging advantage. Our results provide strong support for the enhanced cognitive function hypothesis.

  2. Cortical thickness changes correlate with cognition changes after cognitive training: Evidence from a Chinese community study

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    Lijuan eJiang

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate whether changes in cortical thickness correlated with cognitive function changes in healthy older adults after receiving cognitive training interventions. Moreover, it also aimed to examine the differential impacts of a multi-domain and a single-domain cognitive training interventions. Longitudinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI scanning was performed on participants 65 to 75 years of age using the Siemens 3.0 T Trio Tim with the MPRAGE sequence. The cortical thickness was determined using FreeSurfer software. Cognitive functioning was evaluated using the Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS. There were significant group × time interaction effects on the left supramarginal, the left frontal pole cortical regions; and a marginal significant group × time interaction effects on visuospatial/constructional and delayed memory scores. In a multi-domain cognitive training group, a number of cortical region changes were significantly positively correlated with changes in attention, delayed memory, and the total score, but significantly negatively correlated with changes in immediate memory and language scores. In the single-domain cognitive training group, some cortical region changes were significantly positively associated with changes in immediate memory, delayed memory, and the total score, while they were significantly negatively associated with changes in visuospatial/constructional, language, and attention scores. Overall, multi-domain cognitive training offered more advantages in visuospatial/constructional, attention, and delayed memory abilities, while single-domain cognitive training benefited immediate memory ability more effectively. These findings suggest that healthy older adults benefit more from the multi-domain cognitive training than single-domain cognitive training. Cognitive training has impacted on cortical thickness changes in healthy elderly

  3. Cortical Thickness Changes Correlate with Cognition Changes after Cognitive Training: Evidence from a Chinese Community Study.

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    Jiang, Lijuan; Cao, Xinyi; Li, Ting; Tang, Yingying; Li, Wei; Wang, Jijun; Chan, Raymond C; Li, Chunbo

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether changes in cortical thickness correlated with cognitive function changes in healthy older adults after receiving cognitive training interventions. Moreover, it also aimed to examine the differential impacts of a multi-domain and a single-domain cognitive training interventions. Longitudinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanning was performed on participants 65-75 years of age using the Siemens 3.0 T Trio Tim with the Magnetization Prepared Rapid Gradient Echo (MPRAGE) sequence. The cortical thickness was determined using FreeSurfer Software. Cognitive functioning was evaluated using the Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS). There were significant group × time interaction effects on the left supramarginal, the left frontal pole cortical regions; and a marginal significant group × time interaction effects on visuospatial/constructional and delayed memory scores. In a multi-domain cognitive training group, a number of cortical region changes were significantly positively correlated with changes in attention, delayed memory, and the total score, but significantly negatively correlated with changes in immediate memory and language scores. In the single-domain cognitive training group, some cortical region changes were significantly positively associated with changes in immediate memory, delayed memory, and the total score, while they were significantly negatively associated with changes in visuospatial/constructional, language, and attention scores. Overall, multi-domain cognitive training offered more advantages in visuospatial/constructional, attention, and delayed memory abilities, while single-domain cognitive training benefited immediate memory ability more effectively. These findings suggest that healthy older adults benefit more from the multi-domain cognitive training than single-domain cognitive training. Cognitive training has impacted on cortical thickness changes in

  4. Distributive justice and cognitive enhancement in lower, normal intelligence.

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    Dunlop, Mikael; Savulescu, Julian

    2014-01-01

    There exists a significant disparity within society between individuals in terms of intelligence. While intelligence varies naturally throughout society, the extent to which this impacts on the life opportunities it affords to each individual is greatly undervalued. Intelligence appears to have a prominent effect over a broad range of social and economic life outcomes. Many key determinants of well-being correlate highly with the results of IQ tests, and other measures of intelligence, and an IQ of 75 is generally accepted as the most important threshold in modern life. The ability to enhance our cognitive capacities offers an exciting opportunity to correct disabling natural variation and inequality in intelligence. Pharmaceutical cognitive enhancers, such as modafinil and methylphenidate, have been shown to have the capacity to enhance cognition in normal, healthy individuals. Perhaps of most relevance is the presence of an 'inverted U effect' for most pharmaceutical cognitive enhancers, whereby the degree of enhancement increases as intelligence levels deviate further below the mean. Although enhancement, including cognitive enhancement, has been much debated recently, we argue that there are egalitarian reasons to enhance individuals with low but normal intelligence. Under egalitarianism, cognitive enhancement has the potential to reduce opportunity inequality and contribute to relative income and welfare equality in the lower, normal intelligence subgroup. Cognitive enhancement use is justifiable under prioritarianism through various means of distribution; selective access to the lower, normal intelligence subgroup, universal access, or paradoxically through access primarily to the average and above average intelligence subgroups. Similarly, an aggregate increase in social well-being is achieved through similar means of distribution under utilitarianism. In addition, the use of cognitive enhancement within the lower, normal intelligence subgroup negates, or at

  5. Cognitive biases can affect moral intuitions about cognitive enhancement

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    Caviola, L.; Mannino, A.; Savulescu, J.; Faulmüller, N.

    2014-01-01

    Research into cognitive biases that impair human judgment has mostly been applied to the area of economic decision-making. Ethical decision-making has been comparatively neglected. Since ethical decisions often involve very high individual as well as collective stakes, analyzing how cognitive biases

  6. Cognitive enhancement kept within contexts: neuroethics and informed public policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shook, John R; Galvagni, Lucia; Giordano, James

    2014-01-01

    Neurothics has far greater responsibilities than merely noting potential human enhancements arriving from novel brain-centered biotechnologies and tracking their implications for ethics and civic life. Neuroethics must utilize the best cognitive and neuroscientific knowledge to shape incisive discussions about what could possibly count as enhancement in the first place, and what should count as genuinely "cognitive" enhancement. Where cognitive processing and the mental life is concerned, the lived context of psychological performance is paramount. Starting with an enhancement to the mental abilities of an individual, only performances on real-world exercises can determine what has actually been cognitively improved. And what can concretely counts as some specific sort of cognitive improvement is largely determined by the classificatory frameworks of cultures, not brain scans or laboratory experiments. Additionally, where the public must ultimately evaluate and judge the worthiness of individual performance enhancements, we mustn't presume that public approval towards enhancers will somehow automatically arrive without due regard to civic ideals such as the common good or social justice. In the absence of any nuanced appreciation for the control which performance contexts and public contexts exert over what "cognitive" enhancements could actually be, enthusiastic promoters of cognitive enhancement can all too easily depict safe and effective brain modifications as surely good for us and for society. These enthusiasts are not unaware of oft-heard observations about serious hurdles for reliable enhancement from neurophysiological modifications. Yet those observations are far more common than penetrating investigations into the implications to those hurdles for a sound public understanding of cognitive enhancement, and a wise policy review over cognitive enhancement. We offer some crucial recommendations for undertaking such investigations, so that cognitive enhancers

  7. Cognitive enhancement in schizophrenia: pharmacological and cognitive remediation approaches.

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    Harvey, Philip D; Bowie, Christopher R

    2012-09-01

    This article discusses the measurement of cognition in schizophrenia, its role as a determinant of disability, and treatment efforts to date, including pharmacological and behavioral interventions as well as effective treatments that lead to improved outcomes. The measurement of functioning when patients with schizophrenia receive treatment in the office is addressed. The review focuses on new developments in the creation and adoption of a consensus method for the assessment of cognitive functioning in treatment studies, on the increased appreciation for assessment of functional skills in the prediction of everyday outcomes, and on developments in the basic neuroscience of cognition.

  8. Cognitive Enhancement Kept within Contexts: Neuroethics and Informed Public Policy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John eShook

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Neuroethics has greater responsibilities than merely noting potential human enhancements ascribed to brain science, and tracking their implications for ethics and civic life. Neuroethics must utilize current neuroscientific knowledge to shape incisive discussions about what could count as enhancement in the first place, and what should count as genuinely ‘cognitive’ enhancement. Where cognitive processing and mental life are concerned, the lived context of psychological performance is paramount. Starting with an enhancement to the mental abilities of an individual, only performances on real-world exercises can determine what is actually cognitively improved. And, what concretely counts as some specific sort of cognitive improvement is largely determined by classificatory frameworks of cultures, not brain scans or laboratory experiments. As well, the public must ultimately evaluate and judge the worthiness of individual performance enhancements; we mustn’t presume that public approval towards enhancers will automatically arrive without due regard to civic ideals such as the common good or social justice. In the absence of a nuanced appreciation for the control which performance and public contexts exert over what ‘cognitive’ enhancements could actually be, enthusiastic promoters of cognitive enhancement can too easily depict safe and effective brain modifications as good for society. These enthusiasts are not unaware of hurdles for reliable enhancement through neurophysiological modifications. Yet those observations are far more common than penetrating investigations into the implications of such hurdles for both sound public understanding of cognitive enhancement, and development of policy to guide cognitive enhancement. In this essay, we seek to more accurately define and contextualize cognitive performance enhancement, and offer recommendations to ensure that cognitive enhancers that truly deserve public approval can be better

  9. Bilingualism and Musicianship Enhance Cognitive Control

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    Scott R. Schroeder

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Learning how to speak a second language (i.e., becoming a bilingual and learning how to play a musical instrument (i.e., becoming a musician are both thought to increase executive control through experience-dependent plasticity. However, evidence supporting this effect is mixed for bilingualism and limited for musicianship. In addition, the combined effects of bilingualism and musicianship on executive control are unknown. To determine whether bilingualism, musicianship, and combined bilingualism and musicianship improve executive control, we tested 219 young adults belonging to one of four groups (bilinguals, musicians, bilingual musicians, and controls on a nonlinguistic, nonmusical, visual-spatial Simon task that measured the ability to ignore an irrelevant and misinformative cue. Results revealed that bilinguals, musicians, and bilingual musicians showed an enhanced ability to ignore a distracting cue relative to controls, with similar levels of superior performance among bilinguals, musicians, and bilingual musicians. These results indicate that bilingualism and musicianship improve executive control and have implications for educational and rehabilitation programs that use music and foreign language instruction to boost cognitive performance.

  10. Bilingualism and Musicianship Enhance Cognitive Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Scott R; Marian, Viorica; Shook, Anthony; Bartolotti, James

    2016-01-01

    Learning how to speak a second language (i.e., becoming a bilingual) and learning how to play a musical instrument (i.e., becoming a musician) are both thought to increase executive control through experience-dependent plasticity. However, evidence supporting this effect is mixed for bilingualism and limited for musicianship. In addition, the combined effects of bilingualism and musicianship on executive control are unknown. To determine whether bilingualism, musicianship, and combined bilingualism and musicianship improve executive control, we tested 219 young adults belonging to one of four groups (bilinguals, musicians, bilingual musicians, and controls) on a nonlinguistic, nonmusical, visual-spatial Simon task that measured the ability to ignore an irrelevant and misinformative cue. Results revealed that bilinguals, musicians, and bilingual musicians showed an enhanced ability to ignore a distracting cue relative to controls, with similar levels of superior performance among bilinguals, musicians, and bilingual musicians. These results indicate that bilingualism and musicianship improve executive control and have implications for educational and rehabilitation programs that use music and foreign language instruction to boost cognitive performance.

  11. Cognitive enhancement treatments for bipolar disorder

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    Miskowiak, Kamilla W; Carvalho, André F; Vieta, Eduard

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive dysfunction is an emerging treatment target in bipolar disorder (BD). Several trials have assessed the efficacy of novel pharmacological and psychological treatments on cognition in BD but the findings are contradictory and unclear. A systematic search following the PRISMA guidelines...

  12. An ecological approach to cognitive enhancement: complex motor training.

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    Moreau, David; Morrison, Alexandra B; Conway, Andrew R A

    2015-05-01

    Cognitive training has received a lot of attention recently, yielding findings that can be conflicting and controversial. In this paper, we present a novel approach to cognitive training based on complex motor activities. In a randomized controlled design, participants were assigned to one of three conditions: aerobic exercise, working memory training or designed sport--an intervention specifically tailored to include both physical and cognitive demands. After training for eight weeks, the designed sport group showed the largest gains in all cognitive measures, illustrating the efficacy of complex motor activities to enhance cognition. Designed sport training also revealed impressive health benefits, namely decreased heart rate and blood pressure. In this period of skepticism over the efficacy of computerized cognitive training, we discuss the potential of ecological interventions targeting both cognition and physical fitness, and propose some possible applications.

  13. Syncing your brain: electric currents to enhance cognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schutter, D.J.L.G.

    2014-01-01

    Contemporary studies in cognitive neuroscience demonstrate that cognitive performance can be enhanced by applying exogenous low-intensity electric currents to the brain. These findings have resulted in a widespread interest from both scientists and popular media, particularly, regarding the host of

  14. Attitudes toward pharmacological cognitive enhancement-a review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schelle, K.J.; Faulmüller, N.S.; Caviola, L.; Hewstone, M.

    2014-01-01

    A primary means for the augmentation of cognitive brain functions is "pharmacological cognitive enhancement" (PCE). The term usually refers to the off-label use of medical substances to improve mental performance in healthy individuals. With the final aim to advance the normative debate taking place

  15. Physician attitudes towards pharmacological cognitive enhancement: safety concerns are paramount.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Opeyemi C Banjo

    Full Text Available The ethical dimensions of pharmacological cognitive enhancement have been widely discussed in academic circles and the popular media, but missing from the conversation have been the perspectives of physicians - key decision makers in the adoption of new technologies into medical practice. We queried primary care physicians in major urban centers in Canada and the United States with the aim of understanding their attitudes towards cognitive enhancement. Our primary hypothesis was that physicians would be more comfortable prescribing cognitive enhancers to older patients than to young adults. Physicians were presented with a hypothetical pharmaceutical cognitive enhancer that had been approved by the regulatory authorities for use in healthy adults, and was characterized as being safe, effective, and without significant adverse side effects. Respondents overwhelmingly reported increasing comfort with prescribing cognitive enhancers as the patient age increased from 25 to 65. When asked about their comfort with prescribing extant drugs that might be considered enhancements (sildenafil, modafinil, and methylphenidate or our hypothetical cognitive enhancer to a normal, healthy 40 year old, physicians were more comfortable prescribing sildenafil than any of the other three agents. When queried as to the reasons they answered as they did, the most prominent concerns physicians expressed were issues of safety that were not offset by the benefit afforded the individual, even in the face of explicit safety claims. Moreover, many physicians indicated that they viewed safety claims with considerable skepticism. It has become routine for safety to be raised and summarily dismissed as an issue in the debate over pharmacological cognitive enhancement; the observation that physicians were so skeptical in the face of explicit safety claims suggests that such a conclusion may be premature. Thus, physician attitudes suggest that greater weight be placed upon the

  16. Perfectionism and attitudes toward cognitive enhancers (“smart drugs”)

    OpenAIRE

    Stoeber, Joachim; Hotham, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Perfectionism is a personality disposition characterized by exceedingly high standards of performance and pressure to be perfect which may incline students to take cognitive enhancers (“smart drugs”) to boost their academic performance. So far, however, no study has investigated the relationships of multidimensional perfectionism and attitudes toward cognitive enhancers. The present study investigated these relationships in 272 university students examining different dimensions of perfectioni...

  17. nAChR agonist-induced cognition enhancement: integration of cognitive and neuronal mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarter, Martin; Parikh, Vinay; Howe, William M

    2009-10-01

    The identification and characterization of drugs for the treatment of cognitive disorders has been hampered by the absence of comprehensive hypotheses. Such hypotheses consist of (a) a precisely defined cognitive operation that fundamentally underlies a range of cognitive abilities and capacities and, if impaired, contributes to the manifestation of diverse cognitive symptoms; (b) defined neuronal mechanisms proposed to mediate the cognitive operation of interest; (c) evidence indicating that the putative cognition enhancer facilitates these neuronal mechanisms; (d) and evidence indicating that the cognition enhancer facilitates cognitive performance by modulating these underlying neuronal mechanisms. The evidence on the neuronal and attentional effects of nAChR agonists, specifically agonists selective for alpha4beta2* nAChRs, has begun to support such a hypothesis. nAChR agonists facilitate the detection of signals by augmenting the transient increases in prefrontal cholinergic activity that are necessary for a signal to gain control over behavior in attentional contexts. The prefrontal microcircuitry mediating these effects include alpha4beta2* nAChRs situated on the terminals of thalamic inputs and the glutamatergic stimulation of cholinergic terminals via ionotropic glutamate receptors. Collectively, this evidence forms the basis for hypothesis-guided development and characterization of cognition enhancers.

  18. Cognitive enhancing agents in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vreeker, Annabel; van Bergen, Annet H; Kahn, René S

    2015-07-01

    Cognitive dysfunction is a core feature of schizophrenia and is also present in bipolar disorder (BD). Whereas decreased intelligence precedes the onset of psychosis in schizophrenia and remains relatively stable thereafter; high intelligence is a risk factor for bipolar illness but cognitive function decreases after onset of symptoms. While in schizophrenia, many studies have been conducted on the development of cognitive enhancing agents; in BD such studies are almost non-existent. This review focuses on the pharmacological agents with putative effects on cognition in both schizophrenia and bipolar illness; specifically agents targeting the dopaminergic, cholinergic and glutamatergic neurotransmitter pathways in schizophrenia and the cognitive effects of lithium, anticonvulsants and antipsychotics in BD. In the final analysis we conclude that cognitive enhancing agents have not yet been produced convincingly for schizophrenia and have hardly been studied in BD. Importantly, studies should focus on other phases of the illness. To be able to treat cognitive deficits effectively in schizophrenia, patients in the very early stages of the illness, or even before - in the ultra-high risk stages - should be targeted. In contrast, cognitive deficits occur later in BD, and therefore drugs should be tested in BD after the onset of illness. Hopefully, we will then find effective drugs for the incapacitating effects of cognitive deficits in these patients.

  19. Enhancing cognition with video games: a multiple game training study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam C Oei

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Previous evidence points to a causal link between playing action video games and enhanced cognition and perception. However, benefits of playing other video games are under-investigated. We examined whether playing non-action games also improves cognition. Hence, we compared transfer effects of an action and other non-action types that required different cognitive demands. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We instructed 5 groups of non-gamer participants to play one game each on a mobile device (iPhone/iPod Touch for one hour a day/five days a week over four weeks (20 hours. Games included action, spatial memory, match-3, hidden- object, and an agent-based life simulation. Participants performed four behavioral tasks before and after video game training to assess for transfer effects. Tasks included an attentional blink task, a spatial memory and visual search dual task, a visual filter memory task to assess for multiple object tracking and cognitive control, as well as a complex verbal span task. Action game playing eliminated attentional blink and improved cognitive control and multiple-object tracking. Match-3, spatial memory and hidden object games improved visual search performance while the latter two also improved spatial working memory. Complex verbal span improved after match-3 and action game training. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Cognitive improvements were not limited to action game training alone and different games enhanced different aspects of cognition. We conclude that training specific cognitive abilities frequently in a video game improves performance in tasks that share common underlying demands. Overall, these results suggest that many video game-related cognitive improvements may not be due to training of general broad cognitive systems such as executive attentional control, but instead due to frequent utilization of specific cognitive processes during game play. Thus, many video game training related improvements to

  20. Cognitive changes after carotid artery stenting

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grunwald, I.Q.; Politi, M.; Struffert, T.; Krick, C.; Backens, M. [University of the Saarland, Department for Diagnostic and Interventional Neuroradiology, Homburg (Germany); Supprian, T.; Falkai, P.; Reith, W. [University of the Saarland, Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Homburg (Germany)

    2006-05-15

    We aimed to test changes in cognitive performance after carotid artery stenting (CAS). Ten patients were neuropsychologically tested at least 24 h before and 48 h after CAS. To diminish thromboembolic events, we used a proximal protection device. The following neuropsychological tests were selected: The Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), symbol digit test and subtests of the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD) battery (verbal fluency, constructional practice, word list memory and delayed recall). Affective state was determined by the Beck Depression Score (BDS). No patient suffered from depression (BDS <1) or dementia (MMSE 29.9{+-}1.5). Nine of the ten patients (P=0.12) showed increased speed in the Number Connection Test (NCT) (corresponding to trail making test). Most patients showed better or similar results concerning delayed recall (P=0.31). No change was observed in the symbol digit test, word list memory, verbal fluency or constructional practice. Better results concerning NCT and delayed recall after carotid stenting might be due to improved brain perfusion. After CAS, cognitive and memory performance seem to improve. Further studies with different time intervals and more refined testing, as well as perfusion-weighted imaging, are needed. (orig.)

  1. Visualizer cognitive style enhances visual creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmiero, Massimiliano; Nori, Raffaella; Piccardi, Laura

    2016-02-26

    In the last two decades, interest towards creativity has increased significantly since it was recognized as a skill and as a cognitive reserve and is now always more frequently used in ageing training. Here, the relationships between visual creativity and Visualization-Verbalization cognitive style were investigated. Fifty college students were administered the Creative Synthesis Task aimed at measuring the ability to construct creative objects and the Visualization-Verbalization Questionnaire (VVQ) aimed at measuring the attitude to preferentially use either imagery or verbal strategy while processing information. Analyses showed that only the originality score of inventions was positively predicted by the VVQ score: higher VVQ score (indicating the preference to use imagery) predicted originality of inventions. These results showed that the visualization strategy is involved especially in the originality dimension of creative objects production. In light of neuroimaging results, the possibility that different strategies, such those that involve motor processes, affect visual creativity is also discussed.

  2. Action video game training for cognitive enhancement

    OpenAIRE

    Green, C. Shawn; Bavelier, Daphné

    2015-01-01

    Here we review the literature examining the perceptual, attentional, and cognitive benefits of playing one sub-type of video games known as ‘action video games,’ as well as the mechanistic underpinnings of these behavioral effects. We then outline evidence indicating the potential usefulness of these commercial off-the-shelf games for practical, real-world applications such as rehabilitation or the training of job-related skills. Finally, we discuss potential core characteristics of action vi...

  3. The relationship between change in cognition and change in functional ability in schizophrenia during cognitive and psychosocial rehabilitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rispaud, Samuel G; Rose, Jennifer; Kurtz, Matthew M

    2016-10-30

    While a wealth of studies have evaluated cross-sectional links between cognition and functioning in schizophrenia, few have investigated the relationship between change in cognition and change in functioning in the context of treatment trials targeted at cognition. Identifying cognitive skills that, when improved, predict improvement in functioning will guide the development of more targeted rehabilitation for this population. The present study identifies the relationship between change in specific cognitive skills and change in functional ability during one year of cognitive rehabilitation. Ninety-six individuals with schizophrenia were assessed with a battery of cognitive measures and a measure of performance-based functioning before and after cognitive training consisting of either drill-and-practice cognitive remediation or computer skills training. Results revealed that while working and episodic memory, problem-solving, and processing speed skills all improved during the trial, only improved working memory and processing speed skills predicted improvement in functional ability. Secondary analyses revealed these relationships were driven by individuals who showed a moderate level (SD≥0.5) of cognitive improvement during the trial. These findings suggest that while a variety of cognitive skills may improve during training targeted at cognition, only improvements in a subset of cognitive functions may translate into functional gains.

  4. Cognitive-enhancing effects of aripiprazole: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Galderisi Silvana

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Patients with schizophrenia often present mild to severe cognitive deficits which contribute to their social disability. Second-generation antipsychotics have shown only mild to moderate beneficial effects on cognition. The present case report suggests cognitive enhancing effects of aripiprazole, a dopamine partial agonist, shown to increase dopamine release in prefrontal cortex in animal studies. The patient was in his first-episode of schizophrenia, and had no previous exposure to first-generation antipsychotics. Before schizophrenia onset his cognitive functioning was poor and he could not attend regular courses to reach his high school degree; he started but was not able to attend the University courses for several years. After schizophrenia onset, he was treated, in sequence, with olanzapine, amisulpride and aripiprazole. During treatment with the first two second-generation antipsychotics, positive symptoms markedly improved while cognitive functioning remained poor. During treatment with aripiprazole, clinical remission was obtained and the patient was able to attend university courses and pass several examinations. Social functioning was markedly improved. Aripiprazole demonstrated cognitive enhancing effects in this patient. These effects were long-lasting and paralleled by a positive impact on social functioning.

  5. Examining reports and policies on cognitive enhancement: approaches, rationale, and recommendations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Outram, Simon M; Racine, Eric

    2011-01-01

    The phenomenon of cognitive enhancement is attracting attention in bioethics literature and beyond, in public policy. In response, three bodies--the British Medical Association (BMA); the Commission de l'éthique de la Science et de la technologie (CEST) du Québec; the American Academy of Neurology (AAN)--have produced reports and guidance on this topic. To gain insights into different public policy approaches, rationales, and recommendations on the topic, we analyzed these reports in depth. We found convergence on the definition (with the exception of the CEST) of cognitive enhancement. However, we noted a lack of critical reflection with respect to the underlying rationale for developing these reports, i.e., that cognitive enhancement practices are rampant and represent major social changes. As it currently stands, cognitive enhancement is constituted in a way that challenges the creation of coherent and effective policy recommendations. However, policy makers should not simply wait for definitional consensus and hope that on balance the benefits turn out to be greater than the risks. Some components of cognitive enhancement could be reduced down to clearly identified policy targets to be further examined. Then, if appropriate, policy should be created that is, amongst other criteria, beneficial to the majority of the population.

  6. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Johanne Pallesen

    Full Text Available Musical competence may confer cognitive advantages that extend beyond processing of familiar musical sounds. Behavioural evidence indicates a general enhancement of both working memory and attention in musicians. It is possible that musicians, due to their training, are better able to maintain focus on task-relevant stimuli, a skill which is crucial to working memory. We measured the blood oxygenation-level dependent (BOLD activation signal in musicians and non-musicians during working memory of musical sounds to determine the relation among performance, musical competence and generally enhanced cognition. All participants easily distinguished the stimuli. We tested the hypothesis that musicians nonetheless would perform better, and that differential brain activity would mainly be present in cortical areas involved in cognitive control such as the lateral prefrontal cortex. The musicians performed better as reflected in reaction times and error rates. Musicians also had larger BOLD responses than non-musicians in neuronal networks that sustain attention and cognitive control, including regions of the lateral prefrontal cortex, lateral parietal cortex, insula, and putamen in the right hemisphere, and bilaterally in the posterior dorsal prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate gyrus. The relationship between the task performance and the magnitude of the BOLD response was more positive in musicians than in non-musicians, particularly during the most difficult working memory task. The results confirm previous findings that neural activity increases during enhanced working memory performance. The results also suggest that superior working memory task performance in musicians rely on an enhanced ability to exert sustained cognitive control. This cognitive benefit in musicians may be a consequence of focused musical training.

  7. Enhancement of human cognitive performance using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luber, Bruce; Lisanby, Sarah H

    2014-01-15

    Here we review the usefulness of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) in modulating cortical networks in ways that might produce performance enhancements in healthy human subjects. To date over sixty studies have reported significant improvements in speed and accuracy in a variety of tasks involving perceptual, motor, and executive processing. Two basic categories of enhancement mechanisms are suggested by this literature: direct modulation of a cortical region or network that leads to more efficient processing, and addition-by-subtraction, which is disruption of processing which competes or distracts from task performance. Potential applications of TMS cognitive enhancement, including research into cortical function, rehabilitation therapy in neurological and psychiatric illness, and accelerated skill acquisition in healthy individuals are discussed, as are methods of optimizing the magnitude and duration of TMS-induced performance enhancement, such as improvement of targeting through further integration of brain imaging with TMS. One technique, combining multiple sessions of TMS with concurrent TMS/task performance to induce Hebbian-like learning, appears to be promising for prolonging enhancement effects. While further refinements in the application of TMS to cognitive enhancement can still be made, and questions remain regarding the mechanisms underlying the observed effects, this appears to be a fruitful area of investigation that may shed light on the basic mechanisms of cognitive function and their therapeutic modulation.

  8. The use of cognitive enhancers in animal models of fear extinction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, Gary B; Moore, Katherine A

    2011-08-01

    In anxiety disorders, such as posttraumatic stress disorders and phobias, classical conditioning pairs natural (unconditioned) fear-eliciting stimuli with contextual or discrete cues resulting in enduring fear responses to multiple stimuli. Extinction is an active learning process that results in a reduction of conditioned fear responses after conditioned stimuli are no longer paired with unconditioned stimuli. Fear extinction often produces incomplete effects and this highlights the relative permanence of bonds between conditioned stimuli and conditioned fear responses. The animal research literature is rich in its demonstration of cognitive enhancing agents that alter fear extinction. This review specifically examines the fear extinguishing effects of cognitive enhancers that act on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), glutamatergic, cholinergic, adrenergic, dopaminergic, and cannabinoid signaling pathways. It also examines the effects of compounds that alter epigenetic and neurotrophic mechanisms in fear extinction. Of these cognitive enhancers, glutamatergic N-methyl d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor agonists, such as D-cycloserine, have enhanced fear extinction in a context-, dose- and time-dependent manner. Agents that function as glutamatergic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor agonists, alpha2-adrenergic receptor antagonists (such as yohimbine), neurotrophic factors (brain derived neurotrophic factor or BDNF) and histone deacetylase inhibitors (valproate and sodium butyrate) also improve fear extinction in animals. However, some have anxiogenic effects and their contextual and temporal effects need to be more reliably demonstrated. Various cognitive enhancers produce changes in cortico-amygdala synaptic plasticity through multiple mechanisms and these neural changes enhance fear extinction. We need to better define the changes in neural plasticity produced by these agents in order to develop more effective compounds. In the clinical

  9. Cognitive Changes among Institutionalized Elderly People

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, Jose I.; Menacho, Inmaculada; Alcalde, Concepcion; Marchena, Esperanza; Ruiz, Gonzalo; Aguilar, Manuel

    2009-01-01

    The efficiency of different cognitive training procedures in elderly people was studied. Two types of methods to train cognitive and memory functions were compared. One method was based on new technologies and the other one on pencil-and-paper activities. Thirty-six elderly institutionalized people aged 68-94 were trained. Quantitative and memory…

  10. Methylphenidate as a cognitive enhancer in healthy young people

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silmara Batistela

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The so-called cognitive enhancers have been widely and increasingly used by healthy individuals who seek improvements in cognitive performance despite having no pathologies. One drug used for this purpose is methylphenidate, a first-line drug for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD. Objective: The aim of the present study was to test the effect of acute administration of varying doses of methylphenidate (10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg and placebo on a wide range of cognitive functions in healthy young people. Methods: A total of 36 young university students and graduates participated in the study. The participants underwent tests of attention and of episodic, and working memory. Results: No differences in performance were observed on any of the tests. There was a dose-dependent (40 mg > placebo effect on self-reported wellbeing. Conclusions: According to the recent literature, psychostimulant medications, such as methylphenidate, improve performance when cognitive processes are below an optimal level, which was not the case for the subjects of the present study. We suggest the impression that methylphenidate enhances cognitive performance in healthy young people, justifying its use, may be due to improvements in subjective wellbeing promoted by the drug.

  11. Can Smartphones Enhance Telephone-Based Cognitive Assessment (TBCA?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rick Yiu-Cho Kwan

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available TBCA has emerged to solve the limitations of administering cognitive assessments face-to-face. The recent development of telephones and knowledge advances in the area of cognitive impairment may affect the development of TBCA. The purpose of this paper is to discuss how smartphones can be used to enhance the applicability of TBCA, which has previously been administered by conventional telephone. This paper will first review, describe and critique the existing TBCA instruments. It will then discuss the recent developments in tele-technology, the popularity of tele-technology among the elderly, potential benefits and challenges in using smartphones for cognitive assessment, and possible future developments in this technology. In the systematic review, eighteen TBCA instruments were identified. They were found to be valid in differentiating between people with and without dementia. TBCA was previously found to be launched on a conventional telephone platform. The advances in understanding of cognitive impairment may demand that telephones be equipped with more advanced features. Recently, the development and penetration of smartphones among the elderly has been rapid. This may allow the smartphone to enhance its TBCA applicability by overcoming the limitations of the conventional telephone, rendering the TBCA more efficient in addressing the increasing demand and complexity of cognitive assessments in the future. However, more research and technology developments are needed before smartphones can become a valid platform for TBCA.

  12. Global perceived stress predicts cognitive change among older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, Elizabeth; Sliwinski, Martin J; Scott, Stacey B; Hofer, Scott

    2015-09-01

    Research on stress and cognitive aging has primarily focused on examining the effects of biological and psychosocial indicators of stress, with little attention provided to examining the association between perceived stress and cognitive aging. We examined the longitudinal association between global perceived stress (GPS) and cognitive change among 116 older adults (M(age) = 80, SD = 6.40, range = 67-96) in a repeated measurement burst design. Bursts of 6 daily cognitive assessments were repeated every 6 months over a 2-year period, with self-reported GPS assessed at the start of every burst. Using a double-exponential learning model, 2 parameters were estimated: (a) asymptotic level (peak performance), and (b) asymptotic change (the rate at which peak performance changed across bursts). We hypothesized that greater GPS would predict slowed performance in tasks of attention, working memory, and speed of processing and that increases in GPS across time would predict cognitive slowing. Results from latent growth curve analyses were consistent with our first hypothesis and indicated that level of GPS predicted cognitive slowing across time. Changes in GPS did not predict cognitive slowing. This study extends previous findings by demonstrating a prospective association between level of GPS and cognitive slowing across a 2-year period, highlighting the role of psychological stress as a risk factor for poor cognitive function.

  13. How does enhancing cognition affect human values? How does this translate into social responsibility?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabrera, Laura Y

    2015-01-01

    The past decade has seen a rise in the use of different technologies aimed at enhancing cognition of normal healthy individuals. While values have been acknowledged to be an important aspect of cognitive enhancement practices, the discussion has predominantly focused on just a few values, such as safety, peer pressure, and authenticity. How are values, in a broader sense, affected by enhancing cognitive abilities? Is this dependent on the type of technology or intervention used to attain the enhancement, or does the cognitive domain targeted play a bigger role in how values are affected? Values are not only likely to be affected by cognitive enhancement practices; they also play a crucial role in defining the type of interventions that are likely to be undertaken. This paper explores the way values affect and are affected by enhancing cognitive abilities. Furthermore, it argues that knowledge of the interplay between values and cognitive enhancement makes a strong case for social responsibility around cognitive enhancement practices.

  14. Negative symptom improvement during cognitive rehabilitation: results from a 2-year trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eack, Shaun M; Mesholam-Gately, Raquelle I; Greenwald, Deborah P; Hogarty, Susan S; Keshavan, Matcheri S

    2013-08-30

    Cognitive rehabilitation has shown beneficial effects on cognition in patients with schizophrenia, which may also help to improve negative symptoms due to overlapping pathophysiology between these two domains. To better understand the possible relationship between these areas, we conducted an exploratory analysis of the effects of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (CET) on negative symptoms. Early course schizophrenia outpatients (n=58) were randomized to 2 years of CET or an Enriched Supportive Therapy (EST) control condition. Results revealed significant and medium-sized (d=0.61) differential improvements favoring CET in overall negative symptoms, particularly social withdrawal, affective flattening, and motor retardation. Neurocognitive improvement was associated with reduced negative symptoms in CET, but not EST patients. No relationships were observed between improvements in emotion processing aspects of social cognition, as measured by the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test, and negative symptoms. CET represents an effective cognitive rehabilitation intervention for schizophrenia that may also have benefits to negative symptoms. Future studies specifically designed to examine negative symptoms during the course of cognitive rehabilitation are needed.

  15. Cognitive enhancement by transcranial laser stimulation and acute aerobic exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Jungyun; Castelli, Darla M; Gonzalez-Lima, F

    2016-08-01

    This is the first randomized, controlled study comparing the cognitive effects of transcranial laser stimulation and acute aerobic exercise on the same cognitive tasks. We examined whether transcranial infrared laser stimulation of the prefrontal cortex, acute high-intensity aerobic exercise, or the combination may enhance performance in sustained attention and working memory tasks. Sixty healthy young adults were randomly assigned to one of the following four treatments: (1) low-level laser therapy (LLLT) with infrared laser to two forehead sites while seated (total 8 min, 1064 nm continuous wave, 250 mW/cm(2), 60 J/cm(2) per site of 13.6 cm(2)); (2) acute exercise (EX) of high-intensity (total 20 min, with 10-min treadmill running at 85-90 % VO2max); (3) combined treatment (LLLT + EX); or (4) sham control (CON). Participants were tested for prefrontal measures of sustained attention with the psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) and working memory with the delayed match-to-sample task (DMS) before and after the treatments. As compared to CON, both LLLT and EX reduced reaction time in the PVT [F(1.56) = 4.134, p = 0.01, η (2)  = 0.181] and increased the number of correct responses in the DMS [F(1.56) = 4.690, p = 0.005, η (2)  = 0.201], demonstrating a significant enhancing effect of LLLT and EX on cognitive performance. LLLT + EX effects were similar but showed no significantly greater improvement on PVT and DMS than LLLT or EX alone. The transcranial infrared laser stimulation and acute aerobic exercise treatments were similarly effective for cognitive enhancement, suggesting that they augment prefrontal cognitive functions similarly.

  16. Change in Depression Symptomatology and Cognitive Function in Twins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Inge; McGue, Matt; Tan, Qihua

    2016-01-01

    A complex interrelation exists between change in depression symptomatology and cognitive decline. Studies indicate either that depression is a direct risk factor for cognitive change over time, or vice versa. Longitudinal twin studies provide the possibility to unravel cause and effect...... of correlated traits. Here, we have applied twin modeling approaches to shed light on the genetic correlation between both level and change of depression symptomatology and cognitive functioning, and to further explore the bidirectionality of any such correlation using assessments of both phenotypes at two......-sectional heritability estimates of approximately 60% for general cognitive abilities and 30% for affective depressive symptoms. There was a considerable decline in the mean cognitive performance over 10 years, whereas the mean affective depression symptoms score was stable and with no genetic contribution to any...

  17. Leisure activity associated with cognitive ability level, but not cognitive change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gow, Alan John; Avlund, Kirsten; Mortensen, Erik L

    2014-01-01

    with higher cognitive ability (significant correlations ranged from 0.15 to 0.31, p cognitive ability declined significantly. Growth curve models, which provided latent variables for level of and 10-year change in both leisure activity......Although activity participation is promoted as cognitively protective, critical questions of causality remain. In a cohort followed every 5 years from age 75 to 85 years, potential reciprocal associations between level and change in leisure activity participation and level and change in cognitive...... abilities were examined. Participants in the Glostrup 1914 Cohort, a longitudinal study of aging, completed standardized cognitive ability tests and reported their leisure activity participation (11 activities defined a leisure activity score) at ages 75, 80, and 85. Higher leisure activity was associated...

  18. Cognitive Style Predictors of Affect Change in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaacowitz, Derek M.; Seligman, Martin E. P.

    2002-01-01

    Cognitive styles are the lenses through which individuals habitually process information from their environment. In this study, we evaluated whether different cognitive style individual difference variables, such as explanatory style and dispositional optimism, could predict changes in affective state over time in community-dwelling older adults.…

  19. Meditation in Higher Education: Does It Enhance Cognition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helber, Casey; Zook, Nancy A.; Immergut, Matthew

    2012-01-01

    We predicted that students in a sociology course that included contemplative practices (i.e., mindfulness meditation) would show an increase in performance on higher level cognitive abilities (executive functions) over the semester compared to a control group of students. Change in executive functions performance was not significantly different…

  20. Mechanism Based Approaches for Rescuing and Enhancing Cognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary eLynch

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Progress towards pharmacological means for enhancing memory and cognition has been retarded by the widely discussed failure of behavioral studies in animals to predict human outcomes. As a result, a number of groups have targeted cognition-related neurobiological mechanisms in animal models, with the assumption that these basic processes are highly conserved across mammals. Here we survey one such approach that begins with a form of synaptic plasticity intimately related to memory encoding in animals and likely operative in humans. An initial section will describe a detailed hypothesis concerning the signaling and structural events (a ‘substrate map’ that convert learning associated patterns of afferent activity into extremely stable increases in fast, excitatory transmission. We next describe results suggesting that all instances of intellectual impairment so far tested in rodent models involve a common endpoint failure in the substrate map. This will be followed by a clinically plausible proposal for obviating the ultimate defect in these models. We then take up the question of whether it is reasonable to expect, from either general principles or a very limited set of experimental results, that enhancing memory will expand the cognitive capabilities of high functioning brains. The final section makes several suggestions about how to improve translation of behavioral results from animals to humans. Collectively, the material covered here points to the following: 1 enhancement, in the sense of rescue, is not an unrealistic possibility for a broad array of neuropsychiatric disorders; 2 serendipity aside, developing means for improving memory in normals will likely require integration of information about mechanisms with new behavioral testing strategies; 3 a shift in emphasis from synapses to networks is a next, logical step in the evolution of the cognition enhancement field.

  1. Cognition enhancers between treating and doping the mind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanni, Cristina; Lenzken, Silvia C; Pascale, Alessia; Del Vecchio, Igor; Racchi, Marco; Pistoia, Francesca; Govoni, Stefano

    2008-03-01

    Memory, attention and creativity represent three different cognitive domains, which are interconnected and contribute the "mental performance" of an individual. Modern neuroscience has investigated some of the neuronal circuits and of the neurotransmitters and molecular events underlying the above-mentioned cognitive functions. Within this renewed reference context, some of the properties of the components of the remedies to increase mental performance have been studied and validated in experimental models and, to date, these substances are named "smart drugs", "memory enhancing drugs" or "nootropic drugs" (from the Greek root noos for mind and tropein for toward). Recently pharmaceutical industries are increasingly focusing on the research for potential substances in this field: several "smart drugs" are in clinical trials and could be on the market in few years. Furthermore, a quick survey from Internet highlights the presence of a great variety of both approved and non-approved drugs, with some of them addressing to only medical and others to performance-oriented use, opening room to some reflections or speculations from scientific and ethical points of view. In order to point out the effect of nootropic drugs on cognition of healthy people, we reviewed the literature on drug enhancement of various cognitive functions, including memory, attention and creativity. As their simplest, memory is regarded as the ability to remember events or learned material, attention is the cognitive process of selectively concentrating on one aspect while ignoring distracters and creativity could be described as the ability to create products or ideas which are original and which possess a social usefulness. Reports from literature reveal that some medications currently available to patients with memory disorders may also increase performances in healthy people and that drugs designed for psychiatric disorders can also be used to enhance certain mental functions. However, the long

  2. Change in Cognitive Abilities in Older Latinos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Robert S; Capuano, Ana W; Marquez, David X; Amofa, Priscilla; Barnes, Lisa L; Bennett, David A

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to compare patterns of cognitive decline in older Latinos and non-Latinos. At annual intervals for a mean of 5.7 years, older Latino (n=104) and non-Latino (n=104) persons of equivalent age, education, and race completed a battery of 17 cognitive tests from which previously established composite measures of episodic memory, semantic memory, working memory, perceptual speed, and visuospatial ability were derived. In analyses adjusted for age, sex, and education, performance declined over time in each cognitive domain, but there were no ethnic group differences in initial level of function or annual rate of decline. There was evidence of retest learning following the baseline evaluation, but neither the magnitude nor duration of the effect was related to Latino ethnicity, and eliminating the first two evaluations, during which much of retest learning occurred, did not affect ethnic group comparisons. Compared to the non-Latino group, the Latino group had more diabetes (38.5% vs. 25.0; χ2[1]=4.4; p=.037), fewer histories of smoking (24.0% vs. 39.4%, χ2[1]=5.7; p=.017), and lower childhood household socioeconomic level (-0.410 vs. -0.045, t[185.0]=3.1; p=.002), but controlling for these factors did not affect results. Trajectories of cognitive aging in different abilities are similar in Latino and non-Latino individuals of equivalent age, education, and race. (JINS, 2016, 22, 58-65).

  3. Diffusion changes predict cognitive and functional outcome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jokinen, Hanna; Schmidt, Reinhold; Ropele, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    A study was undertaken to determine whether diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) abnormalities in normal-appearing brain tissue (NABT) and in white matter hyperintensities (WMH) predict longitudinal cognitive decline and disability in older individuals independently of the concomitant magnetic...... resonance imaging (MRI) findings....

  4. Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancement in Healthy Individuals: A Compensation for Cognitive Deficits or a Question of Personality?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa J Maier

    Full Text Available The ongoing bioethical debate on pharmacological cognitive enhancement (PCE in healthy individuals is often legitimated by the assumption that PCE will widely spread and become desirable for the general public in the near future. This assumption was questioned as PCE is not equally save and effective in everyone. Additionally, it was supposed that the willingness to use PCE is strongly personality-dependent likely preventing a broad PCE epidemic. Thus, we investigated whether the cognitive performance and personality of healthy individuals with regular nonmedical methylphenidate (MPH use for PCE differ from stimulant-naïve controls. Twenty-five healthy individuals using MPH for PCE were compared with 39 age-, sex-, and education-matched healthy controls regarding cognitive performance and personality assessed by a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery including social cognition, prosocial behavior, decision-making, impulsivity, and personality questionnaires. Substance use was assessed through self-report in an interview and quantitative hair and urine analyses. Recently abstinent PCE users showed no cognitive impairment but superior strategic thinking and decision-making. Furthermore, PCE users displayed higher levels of trait impulsivity, novelty seeking, and Machiavellianism combined with lower levels of social reward dependence and cognitive empathy. Finally, PCE users reported a smaller social network and exhibited less prosocial behavior in social interaction tasks. In conclusion, the assumption that PCE use will soon become epidemic is not supported by the present findings as PCE users showed a highly specific personality profile that shares a number of features with illegal stimulant users. Lastly, regular MPH use for PCE is not necessarily associated with cognitive deficits.

  5. Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancement in Healthy Individuals: A Compensation for Cognitive Deficits or a Question of Personality?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maier, Larissa J; Wunderli, Michael D; Vonmoos, Matthias; Römmelt, Andreas T; Baumgartner, Markus R; Seifritz, Erich; Schaub, Michael P; Quednow, Boris B

    2015-01-01

    The ongoing bioethical debate on pharmacological cognitive enhancement (PCE) in healthy individuals is often legitimated by the assumption that PCE will widely spread and become desirable for the general public in the near future. This assumption was questioned as PCE is not equally save and effective in everyone. Additionally, it was supposed that the willingness to use PCE is strongly personality-dependent likely preventing a broad PCE epidemic. Thus, we investigated whether the cognitive performance and personality of healthy individuals with regular nonmedical methylphenidate (MPH) use for PCE differ from stimulant-naïve controls. Twenty-five healthy individuals using MPH for PCE were compared with 39 age-, sex-, and education-matched healthy controls regarding cognitive performance and personality assessed by a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery including social cognition, prosocial behavior, decision-making, impulsivity, and personality questionnaires. Substance use was assessed through self-report in an interview and quantitative hair and urine analyses. Recently abstinent PCE users showed no cognitive impairment but superior strategic thinking and decision-making. Furthermore, PCE users displayed higher levels of trait impulsivity, novelty seeking, and Machiavellianism combined with lower levels of social reward dependence and cognitive empathy. Finally, PCE users reported a smaller social network and exhibited less prosocial behavior in social interaction tasks. In conclusion, the assumption that PCE use will soon become epidemic is not supported by the present findings as PCE users showed a highly specific personality profile that shares a number of features with illegal stimulant users. Lastly, regular MPH use for PCE is not necessarily associated with cognitive deficits.

  6. Sexual experience enhances cognitive flexibility and dendritic spine density in the medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glasper, Erica R; LaMarca, Elizabeth A; Bocarsly, Miriam E; Fasolino, Maria; Opendak, Maya; Gould, Elizabeth

    2015-11-01

    The medial prefrontal cortex is important for cognitive flexibility, a capability that is affected by environmental conditions and specific experiences. Aversive experience, such as chronic restraint stress, is known to impair performance on a task of cognitive flexibility, specifically attentional set-shifting, in rats. Concomitant with this performance decrement, chronic stress reduces the number of dendritic spines on pyramidal neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex. No previous studies have examined whether a rewarding experience, namely mating, affects cognitive flexibility and dendritic spines in the medial prefrontal cortex of male rats. To test this possibility, we exposed adult male rats to sexual receptive females once daily for one week, assessed attentional set-shifting performance, and then analyzed their brains for changes in dendritic spines. We found that sexual experience improved performance on extradimensional set-shifting, which is known to require the medial prefrontal cortex. Additionally, we observed increased dendritic spine density on apical and basal dendrites of pyramidal neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex, but not the orbitofrontal cortex, after sexual experience. We also found that sexual experience enhanced dendritic spine density on granule neurons of the dentate gyrus. The ventral hippocampus sends a direct projection to the medial prefrontal cortex, raising the possibility that experience-dependent changes in the hippocampus are necessary for alterations in medial prefrontal cortex structure and function. As a first attempt at investigating this, we inactivated the ventral hippocampus with the GABA agonist muscimol, after each daily bout of sexual experience to observe whether the beneficial effects on cognitive flexibility were abolished. Contrary to our hypothesis, blocking hippocampal activity after sexual experience had no impact on enhanced cognitive flexibility. Taken together, these findings indicate that sexual

  7. Pharmacological Enhancement of Memory or Cognition in Normal Subjects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary eLynch

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The possibility of expanding memory or cognitive capabilities above levels in high functioning individuals is a topic of intense discussion among scientists and in society at large. The majority of animal studies use behavioral endpoint measures; this has produced valuable information but limited predictability for human outcomes. Accordingly, several groups are pursuing a complementary strategy with treatments targeting synaptic events associated with memory encoding or forebrain network operations. Transcription and translation figure prominently in substrate work directed at enhancement. Notably, the question of why new proteins would be needed for a now-forming memory given that learning-driven synthesis presumably occurred throughout the immediate past has been largely ignored. Despite this conceptual problem, and some controversy, recent studies have reinvigorated the idea that selective gene manipulation is a plausible route to enhancement. Efforts to improve memory by facilitating synaptic encoding of information have also progressed, in part due of breakthroughs on mechanisms that stabilize learning-related, long-term potentiation (LTP. These advances point to a reductionistic hypothesis for a diversity of experimental results on enhancement, and identify under-explored possibilities. Cognitive enhancement remains an elusive goal, in part due to the difficulty of defining the target. The popular view of cognition as a collection of definable computations seems to miss the fluid, integrative process experienced by high functioning individuals. The neurobiological approach obviates these psychological issues to directly test the consequences of improving throughput in networks underlying higher order behaviors. The few relevant studies testing drugs that selectively promote excitatory transmission indicate that it is possible to expand cortical networks engaged by complex tasks and that this is accompanied by capabilities not found in

  8. Enhanced effects of combined cognitive bias modification and computerised cognitive behaviour therapy on social anxiety

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma Butler

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available This study examines whether combined cognitive bias modification for interpretative biases (CBM-I and computerised cognitive behaviour therapy (C-CBT can produce enhanced positive effects on interpretation biases and social anxiety. Forty socially anxious students were randomly assigned into two conditions, an intervention group (positive CBM-I + C-CBT or an active control (neutral CBM-I + C-CBT. At pre-test, participants completed measures of social anxiety, interpretative bias, cognitive distortions, and social and work adjustment. They were exposed to 6 × 30 min sessions of web-based interventions including three sessions of either positive or neutral CBM-I and three sessions of C-CBT, one session per day. At post-test and two-week follow-up, participants completed the baseline measures. A combined positive CBM-I + C-CBT produced less negative interpretations of ambiguous situations than neutral CBM-I + C-CBT. The results also showed that both positive CBM-I + C-CBT and neutral CBM-I + C-CBT reduced social anxiety and cognitive distortions as well as improving work and social adjustment. However, greater effect sizes were observed in the positive CBM-I + C-CBT condition than the control. This indicates that adding positive CBM-I to C-CBT enhanced the training effects on social anxiety, cognitive distortions, and social and work adjustment compared to the neutral CBM-I + C-CBT condition.

  9. Exercise Induced Neuroplasticity to Enhance Therapeutic Outcomes of Cognitive Remediation in Schizophrenia: Analyzing the Role of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campos, Carlos; Rocha, Nuno Bf; Nardi, Antonio E; Lattari, Eduardo; Machado, Sergio

    2016-12-23

    Cognitive impairment is a major manifestation of schizophrenia and a crucial treatment target as these deficits are closely related to patients' functional outcomes. Cognitive remediation is the gold-standard practice to address cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. There is clear evidence stating that cognitive remediation improves cognitive function and promotes structural neuroplastic changes in patients with schizophrenia, with brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression emerging as a potential biomarker for its efficacy. This is particularly important as there is clear evidence relating atypical BDNF expression to cognitive impairment in patients with schizophrenia. Despite the valuable role of cognitive remediation in the management of schizophrenia, there is still a need to develop methods that allow to maximize its efficacy. In this review, we present a hypothesis arguing that cognitive remediation efficacy for patients with schizophrenia can be enhanced by aerobic exercise-induced BDNF upregulation. There have been a few trials reporting where combining aerobic exercise with cognitive training was superior to cognitive training alone to improve cognitive functioning in patients with schizophrenia. Furthermore, there is preliminary evidence suggesting that combined aerobic and cognitive training can increase peripheral BDNF levels. Thereby, engaging in aerobic exercise in close temporal proximity to cognitive remediation may allow to achieve a state of neuroplastic readiness in the brain, facilitating cognitive functioning enhancement. Although this hypothesis still lacks evidence, future clinical trials using cognitive remediation for schizophrenia should explore strategies to maximize neuroplasticity and achieve optimal cognitive improvements.

  10. Imaging changes associated with cognitive abnormalities in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koshimori, Yuko; Segura, Barbara; Christopher, Leigh; Lobaugh, Nancy; Duff-Canning, Sarah; Mizrahi, Romina; Hamani, Clement; Lang, Anthony E; Aminian, Kelly; Houle, Sylvain; Strafella, Antonio P

    2015-07-01

    The current study investigates both gray and white matter changes in non-demented Parkinson's disease (PD) patients with varying degrees of mild cognitive deficits and elucidates the relationships between the structural changes and clinical sequelae of PD. Twenty-six PD patients and 15 healthy controls (HCs) were enrolled in the study. Participants underwent T1-weighted and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) scans. Their cognition was assessed using a neuropsychological battery. Compared with HCs, PD patients showed significant cortical thinning in sensorimotor (left pre- and postcentral gyri) and cognitive (left dorsolateral superior frontal gyrus [DLSFG]) regions. The DLSFG cortical thinning correlated with executive and global cognitive impairment in PD patients. PD patients showed white matter abnormalities as well, primarily in bilateral frontal and temporal regions, which also correlated with executive and global cognitive impairment. These results seem to suggest that both gray and white matter changes in the frontal regions may constitute an early pathological substrate of cognitive impairment of PD providing a sensitive biomarker for brain changes in PD.

  11. Sleep-wake changes and cognition in neurodegenerative disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naismith, Sharon L; Lewis, Simon J G; Rogers, Naomi L

    2011-01-01

    With the increasing aging population, neurodegenerative disorders will become more common in clinical practice. These disorders involve multiple pathophysiological mechanisms that differentially affect cognition, mood, and physical functions. Possibly due to the involvement of common underlying neurobiological circuits, sleep and/or circadian (sleep-wake) changes are also common in this disease group. Of significance, sleep-wake changes are often a prodromal feature and are predictive of cognitive decline, psychiatric symptoms, quality of life, need for institutional care, and caregiver burden. Unfortunately, in neurodegenerative disease, few studies have included detailed polysomnography or neuropsychological assessments although some data indicate that sleep and neurocognitive features are related. Further studies are also required to address the effects of pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatments on cognitive functioning. Such research will hopefully lead to targeted early intervention approaches for cognitive decline in older people.

  12. Enhanced stimulus strength improves visual cognition in aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cronin-Golomb, Alice; Gilmore, Grover C; Neargarder, Sandy; Morrison, Sarah R; Laudate, Thomas M

    2007-10-01

    Deficits in visual cognition in Alzheimer's disease (AD) arise from neuropathological changes in higher-order association areas of the cortex and from defective input from lower-level visual processing areas. We investigated whether enhanced signal strength may lead to improvement of visual cognition in AD. We tested 35 individuals with probable AD, 35 age-matched elderly control (EC) and 58 young control (YC) adults on letter identification, word reading, picture naming, discrimination of unfamiliar faces, and pattern completion. The contrast sensitivity step-difference across an independent sample of AD and EC groups was used in calculating an image filter, from which we produced stimulus-strength conditions of low-degraded, medium-normal, and high-enhanced. Using this filter we created a hypothetical proximal-strength equivalence between AD at medium strength and EC at low strength, and between AD at high strength and EC at medium strength. For letter identification, word reading, picture naming, and face discrimination, medium strength elicited AD accuracy levels and reaction times that were similar to those of EC at low strength. On picture naming, increased strength reduced perceptual-type errors for EC and AD and random errors for AD. For word reading, high strength elicited AD accuracy levels and reaction times that were equivalent to those of EC at medium strength. We saw no effect of signal-strength manipulation on performance of pattern completion, possibly owing to the complex cognitive demands of that task or to the inadequacy of the filter for its images. The results indicate that putative AD-EC differences in cognition directly reflect contrast sensitivity differences between the groups. Enhancement of stimulus strength can ameliorate vision-based deficits and lead to improvement in some aspects of cognitive performance. These results suggest new non-pharmacological avenues to explore in the attempt to improve cognition in elderly adults and

  13. Cognition Enhancing Activity of Sulforaphane Against Scopolamine Induced Cognitive Impairment in Zebra Fish (Danio rerio).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajesh, Venugopalan; Ilanthalir, Sakthivel

    2016-10-01

    Several epidemiological studies have shown that consumption of large quantities of vegetables especially cruciferous vegetables (Broccoli and Brussels sprouts) can protect against chronic diseases. Sulforaphane, an isothiocynate found in cruciferous vegetables has been demonstrated to have neuroprotective effects in several experimental paradigms. This study was undertaken to examine the effect of sulforaphane on cognitive impairment in zebra fish model using a novel method of fear conditioning. Initially, the normal behaviour of zebra fishes was studied in light-dark tank for 10 min daily for 10 days. Fishes were then divided into seven groups of twelve in each. Group I served as normal, group II served as fear conditioned control, group III and group IV were sulforaphane (25 µM/L) and piracetam (200 mg/L) treated respectively. Group V served as scopolamine (400 µM/L) induced memory impairment fishes. Group VI and VII were sulforaphane (25 µM/L) and piracetam (200 mg/L) treated scopolamine induced memory impairment groups respectively. In normal behavioural analysis, fishes preferred to stay in dark compartment. The average number of entries into the dark and time spent in dark were significantly more. Fishes in group II to VII were individually subjected to fear conditioning passive avoidance task and evaluated for learned task memory. It was observed that the average number of entries into dark and time spent in dark were significantly decreased. After exposure to respective treatment fishes in group III to VII were subjected to cognitive evaluation. There was no significant difference in cognition of group III and IV fishes exposed to sulforaphane and piracetam alone respectively. Fishes exposed to scopolamine showed a significant cognitive impairment. Sulforaphane exposure prior to scopolamine significantly retained the memory of learned task. These findings suggest that sulforaphane might be a promising therapeutic agent for cognitive enhancement in

  14. Cognitive Change Predicts Symptom Reduction with Cognitive Therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleim, Birgit; Grey, Nick; Wild, Jennifer; Nussbeck, Fridtjof W.; Stott, Richard; Hackmann, Ann; Clark, David M.; Ehlers, Anke

    2013-01-01

    Objective: There is a growing body of evidence for the effectiveness of trauma-focused cognitive behavior therapy (TF-CBT) for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but few studies to date have investigated the mechanisms by which TF-CBT leads to therapeutic change. Models of PTSD suggest that a core treatment mechanism is the change in…

  15. Intelligent Cognitive Radio Models for Enhancing Future Radio Astronomy Observations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayodele Abiola Periola

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Radio astronomy organisations desire to optimise the terrestrial radio astronomy observations by mitigating against interference and enhancing angular resolution. Ground telescopes (GTs experience interference from intersatellite links (ISLs. Astronomy source radio signals received by GTs are analysed at the high performance computing (HPC infrastructure. Furthermore, observation limitation conditions prevent GTs from conducting radio astronomy observations all the time, thereby causing low HPC utilisation. This paper proposes mechanisms that protect GTs from ISL interference without permanent prevention of ISL data transmission and enhance angular resolution. The ISL transmits data by taking advantage of similarities in the sequence of observed astronomy sources to increase ISL connection duration. In addition, the paper proposes a mechanism that enhances angular resolution by using reconfigurable earth stations. Furthermore, the paper presents the opportunistic computing scheme (OCS to enhance HPC utilisation. OCS enables the underutilised HPC to be used to train learning algorithms of a cognitive base station. The performances of the three mechanisms are evaluated. Simulations show that the proposed mechanisms protect GTs from ISL interference, enhance angular resolution, and improve HPC utilisation.

  16. Changes in illness perceptions mediated the effect of cognitive behavioural therapy in severe functional somatic syndromes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Sara Sletten; Frostholm, Lisbeth; Ørnbøl, Eva

    2014-01-01

    . Methods We analysed additional data from a randomised controlled trial comparing completers of cognitive behavioural group therapy (46 patients) to an enhanced usual care group (66 patients). Proposed mediators (illness perceptions) and primary (physical health) and secondary (somatic symptoms and illness...... year after treatment (sum of indirect effects 1.556, BCa 95% CI (0.006; 3.620)). Improving perceived control was particularly important. Changes in illness perceptions from baseline to 16 months after randomisation were associated with clinically meaningful improvements in physical health, somatic......Objective Although there is substantial evidence that cognitive behavioural therapy alleviates symptoms in functional somatic syndromes, the mechanisms of change are less investigated. This study examined whether changes in illness perceptions mediated the effect of cognitive behavioural therapy...

  17. The Source of Enhanced Cognitive Control in Bilinguals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmorey, Karen; Luk, Gigi; Pyers, Jennie E.; Bialystok, Ellen

    2009-01-01

    Bilinguals often outperform monolinguals on nonverbal tasks that require resolving conflict from competing alternatives. The regular need to select a target language is argued to enhance executive control. We investigated whether this enhancement stems from a general effect of bilingualism (the representation of two languages) or from a modality constraint that forces language selection. Bimodal bilinguals can, but do not always, sign and speak at the same time. Their two languages involve distinct motor and perceptual systems, leading to weaker demands on language control. We compared the performance of 15 monolinguals, 15 bimodal bilinguals, and 15 unimodal bilinguals on a set of flanker tasks. There were no group differences in accuracy, but unimodal bilinguals were faster than the other groups; bimodal bilinguals did not differ from monolinguals. These results trace the bilingual advantage in cognitive control to the unimodal bilingual’s experience controlling two languages in the same modality. PMID:19121123

  18. Change in Dysfunctional Beliefs About Sleep in Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Therapy, and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eidelman, Polina; Talbot, Lisa; Ivers, Hans; Bélanger, Lynda; Morin, Charles M; Harvey, Allison G

    2016-01-01

    As part of a larger randomized controlled trial, 188 participants were randomized to behavior therapy (BT), cognitive therapy (CT), or cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for insomnia. The aims of this study were threefold: (a) to determine whether change in dysfunctional beliefs about sleep was related to change in sleep, insomnia symptoms, and impairment following treatment; (b) to determine whether BT, CT, and CBT differ in their effects on dysfunctional beliefs; and (c) to determine whether the treatments differ in their effects on particular kinds of dysfunctional beliefs. Beliefs, sleep, insomnia symptoms, and sleep-related psychosocial impairment were assessed at pretreatment, posttreatment, and 6- and 12-month follow-up. Greater change in dysfunctional beliefs occurring over the course of BT, CT, or CBT was associated with greater improvement in insomnia symptoms and impairment at posttreatment and both follow-ups. All groups experienced a significant decrease in dysfunctional beliefs during treatment, which were sustained through 6- and 12-month follow-up. Compared with the BT group, a greater proportion of participants in the CT and/or CBT groups endorsed dysfunctional beliefs below a level considered clinically significant at posttreatment and 12-month follow-up. The results demonstrate the importance of targeting dysfunctional beliefs in insomnia treatment, suggest that beliefs may be significantly modified with BT alone, and indicate that cognitive interventions may be particularly powerful in enhancing belief change.

  19. GABA(A) receptor subtype selective cognition enhancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maubach, Karen

    2003-08-01

    Currently the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) is largely unrealised, with no preventive or curative therapies. The marketed acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (eg. donepezil, Aricept) are directed toward temporary symptomatic relief from impaired cognition, but have prominent adverse effects with minimal efficacy. In pursuit of novel cognition enhancers, the observation that classical benzodiazepines (BZ, eg. diazepam) are amnesic, coupled with the preservation of GABA(A) receptors in brain areas most affected by AD, highlighted the GABA(A) receptor as a potential therapeutic target. In contrast to the amnesic BZ agonists, the BZ inverse agonists (eg. DMCM) which attenuate GABA(A) receptor function, have been shown to improve performance in animal models of learning and memory. Unfortunately, such non-selective ligands also induce anxiety and convulsions. More recently, novel ligands have been developed (eg. 6,6-dimethyl-3-(2-hydroxyethyl)thio-1-(thiazol-2-yl)-6,7-dihydro-2-benzothiophen-4(5H)-one) that demonstrate binding selectivity and high inverse agonism for the alpha5 GABA(A) receptor subtype, which is preferentially located in the hippocampus, a region of the brain associated with learning and memory. Pre-clinical results are encouraging, since these alpha5 selective inverse agonists enhance memory in animal models, such as spatial learning in the Morris water-maze, but are devoid of the adverse effects associated with activity at other GABA(A) receptor subtypes in other brain regions. If the efficacy and safety profiles of alpha5 inverse agonists in humans prove to be similar to those seen in pre-clinical studies, these compounds would offer significant benefit to AD and MCI patients.

  20. Objective and subjective cognitive enhancing effects of mixed amphetamine salts in healthy people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ilieva, Irena; Boland, Joseph; Farah, Martha J

    2013-01-01

    Psychostimulants such as mixed amphetamine salts (MAS, brand name Adderall) are widely used for cognitive enhancement by healthy young people, yet laboratory research on effectiveness has yielded variable results. The present study assessed the effects of MAS in healthy young adults with an adequately powered double-blind cross-over placebo-controlled trial. We examined effects in 13 measures of cognitive ability including episodic memory, working memory, inhibitory control, convergent creativity, intelligence and scholastic achievement, with the goals of determining (1) whether the drug is at least moderately enhancing (Cohen's d >= .5) to some or all cognitive abilities tested, (2) whether its effects on cognition are moderated by baseline ability or COMT genotype, and (3) whether it induces an illusory perception of cognitive enhancement. The results did not reveal enhancement of any cognitive abilities by MAS for participants in general. There was a suggestion of moderation of enhancement by baseline ability and COMT genotype in a minority of tasks, with MAS enhancing lower ability participants on word recall, embedded figures and Raven's Progressive Matrices. Despite the lack of enhancement observed for most measures and most participants, participants nevertheless believed their performance was more enhanced by the active capsule than by placebo. We conclude that MAS has no more than small effects on cognition in healthy young adults, although users may perceive the drug as enhancing their cognition. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Cognitive Enhancers'.

  1. Moderators of noise-induced cognitive change in healthy adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernice AL Wright

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Environmental noise causes cognitive impairment, particularly in executive function and episodic memory domains, in healthy populations. However, the possible moderating influences on this relationship are less clear. This study assessed 54 healthy participants (24 men on a cognitive battery (measuring psychomotor speed, attention, executive function, working memory, and verbal learning and memory under three (quiet, urban, and social noise conditions. IQ, subjective noise sensitivity, sleep, personality, paranoia, depression, anxiety, stress, and schizotypy were assessed on a single occasion. We found significantly slower psychomotor speed (urban, reduced working memory and episodic memory (urban and social, and more cautious decision-making (executive function, urban under noise conditions. There was no effect of sex. Variance in urban noise-induced changes in psychomotor speed, attention, Trail Making B-A (executive function, and immediate recall and social noise-induced changes in verbal fluency (executive function and immediate recall were explained by a combination of baseline cognition and paranoia, noise sensitivity, sleep, or cognitive disorganization. Higher baseline cognition (but not IQ predicted greater impairment under urban and social noise for most cognitive variables. Paranoia predicted psychomotor speed, attention, and executive function impairment. Subjective noise sensitivity predicted executive function and memory impairment. Poor sleep quality predicted less memory impairment. Finally, lower levels of cognitive disorganization predicted slower psychomotor speed and greater memory impairment. The identified moderators should be considered in studies aiming to reduce the detrimental effects of occupational and residential noise. These results highlight the importance of studying noise effects in clinical populations characterized by high levels of the paranoia, sleep disturbances, noise sensitivity, and cognitive

  2. Reduction of endogenous kynurenic acid formation enhances extracellular glutamate, hippocampal plasticity, and cognitive behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potter, Michelle C; Elmer, Greg I; Bergeron, Richard; Albuquerque, Edson X; Guidetti, Paolo; Wu, Hui-Qiu; Schwarcz, Robert

    2010-07-01

    At endogenous brain concentrations, the astrocyte-derived metabolite kynurenic acid (KYNA) antagonizes the alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and, possibly, the glycine co-agonist site of the NMDA receptor. The functions of these two receptors, which are intimately involved in synaptic plasticity and cognitive processes, may, therefore, be enhanced by reductions in brain KYNA levels. This concept was tested in mice with a targeted deletion of kynurenine aminotransferase II (KAT II), a major biosynthetic enzyme of brain KYNA. At 21 days of age, KAT II knock-out mice had reduced hippocampal KYNA levels (-71%) and showed significantly increased performance in three cognitive paradigms that rely in part on the integrity of hippocampal function, namely object exploration and recognition, passive avoidance, and spatial discrimination. Moreover, compared with wild-type controls, hippocampal slices from KAT II-deficient mice showed a significant increase in the amplitude of long-term potentiation in vitro. These functional changes were accompanied by reduced extracellular KYNA (-66%) and increased extracellular glutamate (+51%) concentrations, measured by hippocampal microdialysis in vivo. Taken together, a picture emerges in which a reduction in the astrocytic formation of KYNA increases glutamatergic tone in the hippocampus and enhances cognitive abilities and synaptic plasticity. Our studies raise the prospect that interventions aimed specifically at reducing KYNA formation in the brain may constitute a promising molecular strategy for cognitive improvement in health and disease.

  3. The influence of students' cognitive and motivational variables in respect of cognitive conflict and conceptual change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Sukjin; Scharmann, Lawrence C.; Noh, Taehee; Koh, Hanjoong

    2005-09-01

    In this study, the relationships among students’ cognitive/motivational variables, cognitive conflict, and conceptual change were investigated. Subjects were 159 seventh graders in Korea. Tests regarding logical thinking ability, field dependence/independence (FDI), meaningful learning approach, failure tolerance, mastery goal orientation, and self-efficacy were administered to examine students’ cognitive/motivational characteristics. A preconception test and a test of responses to discrepant event were also conducted to examine the degree of students’ cognitive conflict induced by a discrepant event. Computer-assisted instruction, designed to change an undifferentiated weight-density concept into a scientific density concept, was then provided to students as a conceptual change intervention. A conception test was administered as a post-test. The results indicated that FDI was the only statistically significant variable correlated with the degree of cognitive conflict. A stepwise multiple regression analysis revealed that logical thinking ability, FDI, and failure tolerance were statistically significant predictors of the conception test scores. Educational implications are discussed.

  4. [Cognitive changes in decision making process underlying prosocial behavior].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takemura, K; Takagi, O

    1987-08-01

    Using a method of monitoring information acquisition, 76 subjects were instructed to simulate the information search process in which they selected a behavior from available behavioral alternatives which were expected to occur in a situation where donating behavior was needed. In order to measure the cognitive changes, they were asked to rate the importance of behavioral attributes both before and after the decision task. After the decision task, they were asked to rate the inner states. (1) Defensive cognitive changes were found which increased the importance of behavioral costs and decreased the importance of personal moral obligation feelings. This pattern of changes was consistent with the Schwartz & Howard model (1981, 1982, 1984). (2) The defensive cognitive changes were related to the information search strategies. This pattern of relationship partly confirmed the prediction derived from the Schwartz & Howard model (1981, 1982, 1984). (3) The result that the cognitive changes were not related to the inner states was inconsistent with the model of either Piliavin, Dovidio, Gaertner, & Clark (1981, 1982) or Schwartz & Howard (1981, 1982, 1984). An alternative model was proposed and discussed.

  5. Enhanced cognitive Radio Resource Management for LTE systems

    KAUST Repository

    Alqerm, Ismail

    2013-10-01

    The explosive growth in mobile Internet and related services has increased the need for more bandwidth in cellular networks. The Long-Term Evolution (LTE) technology is an attractive solution for operators and subscribers to meet such need since it provides high data rates and scalable bandwidth. Radio Resource Management (RRM) is essential for LTE to provide better communication quality and meet the application QoS requirements. Cognitive resource management is a promising solution for LTE RRM as it improves network efficiency by exploiting radio environment information, intelligent optimization algorithms to configure transmission parameters, and mitigate interference. In this paper, we propose a cognitive resource management scheme to adapt LTE network parameters to the environment conditions. The scheme optimizes resource blocks assignment, modulation selection and bandwidth selection to maximize throughput and minimize interference. The scheme uses constrained optimization for throughput maximization and interference control. It is also enhanced by learning mechanism to reduce the optimization complexity and improve the decision-making quality. Our evaluation results show that our scheme achieved significant improvements in throughput and LTE system capacity. Results also show the improvement in the user satisfaction over other techniques in LTE RRM.

  6. Failure of working memory training to enhance cognition or intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Todd W; Waskom, Michael L; Garel, Keri-Lee A; Cardenas-Iniguez, Carlos; Reynolds, Gretchen O; Winter, Rebecca; Chang, Patricia; Pollard, Kiersten; Lala, Nupur; Alvarez, George A; Gabrieli, John D E

    2013-01-01

    Fluid intelligence is important for successful functioning in the modern world, but much evidence suggests that fluid intelligence is largely immutable after childhood. Recently, however, researchers have reported gains in fluid intelligence after multiple sessions of adaptive working memory training in adults. The current study attempted to replicate and expand those results by administering a broad assessment of cognitive abilities and personality traits to young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive dual n-back working memory training program and comparing their post-training performance on those tests to a matched set of young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive attentional tracking program. Pre- and post-training measurements of fluid intelligence, standardized intelligence tests, speed of processing, reading skills, and other tests of working memory were assessed. Both training groups exhibited substantial and specific improvements on the trained tasks that persisted for at least 6 months post-training, but no transfer of improvement was observed to any of the non-trained measurements when compared to a third untrained group serving as a passive control. These findings fail to support the idea that adaptive working memory training in healthy young adults enhances working memory capacity in non-trained tasks, fluid intelligence, or other measures of cognitive abilities.

  7. Failure of working memory training to enhance cognition or intelligence.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todd W Thompson

    Full Text Available Fluid intelligence is important for successful functioning in the modern world, but much evidence suggests that fluid intelligence is largely immutable after childhood. Recently, however, researchers have reported gains in fluid intelligence after multiple sessions of adaptive working memory training in adults. The current study attempted to replicate and expand those results by administering a broad assessment of cognitive abilities and personality traits to young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive dual n-back working memory training program and comparing their post-training performance on those tests to a matched set of young adults who underwent 20 sessions of an adaptive attentional tracking program. Pre- and post-training measurements of fluid intelligence, standardized intelligence tests, speed of processing, reading skills, and other tests of working memory were assessed. Both training groups exhibited substantial and specific improvements on the trained tasks that persisted for at least 6 months post-training, but no transfer of improvement was observed to any of the non-trained measurements when compared to a third untrained group serving as a passive control. These findings fail to support the idea that adaptive working memory training in healthy young adults enhances working memory capacity in non-trained tasks, fluid intelligence, or other measures of cognitive abilities.

  8. Grey matter changes in cognitively impaired Parkinson's disease patients.

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    Irena Rektorova

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cortical changes associated with cognitive decline in Parkinson's disease (PD are not fully explored and require investigations with established diagnostic classification criteria. OBJECTIVE: We used MRI source-based morphometry to evaluate specific differences in grey matter volume patterns across 4 groups of subjects: healthy controls (HC, PD with normal cognition (PD-NC, PD with mild cognitive impairment (MCI-PD and PD with dementia (PDD. METHODS: We examined 151 consecutive subjects: 25 HC, 75 PD-NC, 29 MCI-PD, and 22 PDD at an Italian and Czech movement disorder centre. Operational diagnostic criteria were applied to classify MCI-PD and PDD. All structural MRI images were processed together in the Czech centre. The spatial independent component analysis was used to assess group differences of local grey matter volume. RESULTS: We identified two independent patterns of grey matter volume deviations: a Reductions in the hippocampus and temporal lobes; b Decreases in fronto-parietal regions and increases in the midbrain/cerebellum. Both patterns differentiated PDD from all other groups and correlated with visuospatial deficits and letter verbal fluency, respectively. Only the second pattern additionally differentiated PD-NC from HC. CONCLUSION: Grey matter changes in PDD involve areas associated with Alzheimer-like pathology while fronto-parietal abnormalities are possibly an early marker of PD cognitive decline. These findings are consistent with a non-linear cognitive progression in PD.

  9. Brain structural complexity and life course cognitive change.

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    Mustafa, Nazahah; Ahearn, Trevor S; Waiter, Gordon D; Murray, Alison D; Whalley, Lawrence J; Staff, Roger T

    2012-07-02

    Fractal measures such as fractal dimension (FD) can quantify the structural complexity of the brain. These have been used in clinical neuroscience to investigate brain development, ageing and in studies of psychiatric and neurological disorders. Here, we examined associations between the FD of white matter and cognitive changes across the life course in the absence of detectable brain disease. The FD was calculated from segmented cerebral white matter MR images in 217 subjects aged about 68years, in whom archived intelligence scores from age 11years were available. Cognitive test scores of fluid and crystallised intelligence were obtained at the time of MR imaging. Significant differences were found (intracranial volume, brain volume, white matter volume and Raven's Progressive Matrices score) between men and women at age 68years and novel associations were found between FD and measures of cognitive change over the life course from age 11 to 68years. Those with greater FD were found to have greater than expected fluid abilities at age 68years than predicted by their childhood intelligence and less cognitive decline from age 11 to 68years. These results are consistent with other reports that FD measures of cortical structural complexity increase across the early life course during maturation of the cerebral cortex and add new data to support an association between FD and cognitive ageing.

  10. Comparison of Cognitive Change after Working Memory Training and Logic and Planning Training in Healthy Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goghari, Vina M; Lawlor-Savage, Linette

    2017-01-01

    Recent attention has focused on the benefits of cognitive training in healthy adults. Many commercial cognitive training programs are available given the attraction of not only bettering one's cognitive capacity, but also potentially preventing age-related declines, which is of particular interest to older adults. The issue of whether cognitive training can improve performance within cognitive domains not trained (i.e., far transfer) is controversial, with meta-analyses of cognitive training both supporting and falsifying this claim. More support is present for the near transfer (i.e., transfer in cognitive domain trained) of cognitive training; however, not in all studies. To date, no studies have compared working memory training to training higher-level processes themselves, namely logic and planning. We studied 97 healthy older adults above the age of 65. Healthy older adults completed either an 8-week web-based cognitive training program on working memory or logic and planning. An additional no-training control group completed two assessments 8-weeks apart. Participants were assessed on cognitive measures of near and far transfer, including working memory, planning, reasoning, processing speed, verbal fluency, cognitive flexibility, and creativity. Participants improved on the trained tasks from the first day to last day of training. Bayesian analyses demonstrated no near or far transfer effects after cognitive training. These results support the conclusion that performance-adaptive computerized cognitive training may not enhance cognition in healthy older adults. Our lack of findings could be due to a variety of reasons, including studying a cohort of healthy older adults that were performing near their cognitive ceiling, employing a training protocol that was not sufficient to produce a change, or that no true findings exist. Research suggests numerous study factors that can moderate the results. In addition, the role of psychological variables, such as

  11. Changes in Acetylcholine Extracellular Levels during Cognitive Processes

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    Pepeu, Giancarlo; Giovannini, Maria Grazia

    2004-01-01

    Measuring the changes in neurotransmitter extracellular levels in discrete brain areas is considered a tool for identifying the neuronal systems involved in specific behavioral responses or cognitive processes. Acetylcholine (ACh) is the first neurotransmitter whose diffusion from the central nervous system was investigated and whose extracellular…

  12. Social Cognitive Determinants of Dietary Behavior Change in University Employes

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    Shawna eDoerksen; Edward eMcAuley

    2014-01-01

    Many adults have poor dietary habits and few studies have focused on mechanisms underlying these behaviors. This study examined psychosocial determinants of dietary behavior change in university employees across a 5-month period. Participants completed measures of fruit and vegetable and low-fat food consumption and social cognitive constructs. Multiple regression analyses accounted for a unique proportion of variation in dietary change. Outcome expectations significantly predicted fruit and ...

  13. Cholinergic Enhancement of Brain Activation in Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI during Episodic Memory Encoding

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    Shannon L Risacher

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To determine the physiological impact of treatment with donepezil (Aricept on neural circuitry supporting episodic memory encoding in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI using functional MRI (fMRI. Methods: 18 patients with MCI and 20 age-matched healthy controls (HC were scanned twice while performing an event-related verbal episodic encoding task. MCI participants were scanned before treatment and after approximately 3 months on donepezil; HC were untreated but rescanned at the same interval. Voxel-level analyses assessed treatment effects in activation profile relative to retest changes in non-treated HC. Changes in task-related connectivity in medial temporal circuitry were also evaluated, as were associations between brain activation pattern, task-related functional connectivity, task performance, and clinical measures of cognition.Results: At baseline, the MCI group showed reduced activation during encoding relative to HC in the right medial temporal lobe (MTL; hippocampal/parahippocampal and additional regions, as well as attenuated task-related deactivation, relative to rest, in a medial parietal lobe cluster. After treatment, the MCI group showed normalized MTL activation and improved parietal deactivation. These changes were associated with cognitive performance. After treatment, the MCI group also demonstrated increased task-related functional connectivity from the right MTL cluster seed region to a network of other sites including the basal nucleus/caudate and bilateral frontal lobes. Increased functional connectivity was associated with improved task performance.Conclusions: Pharmacologic enhancement of cholinergic function in amnestic MCI is associated with changes in brain activation pattern and functional connectivity during episodic memory processing which are in turn related to increased cognitive performance. fMRI is a promising biomarker for assessing treatment related changes in brain function.

  14. Major Cognitive Changes and Micrographia following Globus Pallidus Infarct

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    Sarah Nelson

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Importance. Globus pallidus (GP lesions are well known to cause motor deficits but are less commonly—and perhaps not conclusively—associated with cognitive problems. Observations. We present a 45-year-old male with no significant neurological or psychological problems who after suffering a GP infarct was subsequently found to have substantial cognitive problems and micrographia. Formal neuropsychological testing was not possible due to lack of patient follow-up. Conclusions and Relevance. Despite the conflicting literature on the association of GP lesions and cognitive deficits, our patient demonstrated significant neuropsychological changes following his stroke. In addition, evidence of micrographia likely adds to the literature on the localization of this finding. Our case thus suggests that neuropsychological testing may be beneficial after GP strokes.

  15. Change over Time: Conducting Longitudinal Studies of Children's Cognitive Development.

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    Grammer, Jennie K; Coffman, Jennifer L; Ornstein, Peter A; Morrison, Frederick J

    2013-10-01

    Developmental scientists have argued that the implementation of longitudinal methods is necessary for obtaining an accurate picture of the nature and sources of developmental change (Magnusson & Cairns, 1996; Morrison & Ornstein, 1996; Magnusson & Stattin, 2006). Developmentalists studying cognition have been relatively slow to embrace longitudinal research, and thus few exemplar studies have tracked individual children's cognitive performance over time and even fewer have examined contexts that are associated with this growth. In this article we first outline some of the benefits of implementing longitudinal designs. Using illustrations from existing studies of children's basic cognitive development and of their school-based academic performance, we discuss when it may be appropriate to employ longitudinal (versus other) methods. We then outline methods for integrating longitudinal data into one's research portfolio, contrasting the leveraging of existing longitudinal data sets with the launching of new longitudinal studies in order to address specific questions concerning cognitive development. Finally, for those who are interested in conducting longitudinal investigations of their own, we provide practical on-the-ground guidelines for designing and carrying out such studies of cognitive development.

  16. From Clinical Application to Cognitive Enhancement: The Example of Methylphenidate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busardò, Francesco Paolo; Kyriakou, Chrystalla; Cipolloni, Luigi; Zaami, Simona; Frati, Paola

    2016-01-01

    Methylphenidate (MPD) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant, which belongs to the phenethylamine group and is mainly used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD). However, a growing number of young individuals misuse or abuse MPD to sustain attention, enhance intellectual capacity and increase memory. Recently, the use of MPD as a cognitive enhancement substance has received much attention and raised concerns in the literature and academic circles worldwide. The prescribing frequency of the drug has increased sharply as consequence of the more accurate diagnosis of the ADHD and the popularity of the drug itself due to its beneficial short-term effect. However, careful monitoring is required, because of possible abuse. In this review different aspects concerning the use of MPD have been approached. Data showing its abuse among college students are given, when the drug is prescribed short term beneficial effects and side effects are provided; moreover studies on animal-models suggesting long lasting negative effects on healthy brains are discussed. Finally, emphasis is given to the available formulations and pharmacology.

  17. The impact of neuroscience on society: cognitive enhancement in neuropsychiatric disorders and in healthy people

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahakian, Barbara J.; Bruhl, Annette B.; Cook, Jennifer; Killikelly, Clare; Savulich, George; Piercy, Thomas; Hafizi, Sepehr; Perez, Jesus; Fernandez-Egea, Emilio; Suckling, John; Jones, Peter B.

    2015-01-01

    In addition to causing distress and disability to the individual, neuropsychiatric disorders are also extremely expensive to society and governments. These disorders are both common and debilitating and impact on cognition, functionality and wellbeing. Cognitive enhancing drugs, such as cholinesterase inhibitors and methylphenidate, are used to treat cognitive dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, respectively. Other cognitive enhancers include specific computerized cognitive training and devices. An example of a novel form of cognitive enhancement using the technological advancement of a game on an iPad that also acts to increase motivation is presented. Cognitive enhancing drugs, such as methylphenidate and modafinil, which were developed as treatments, are increasingly being used by healthy people. Modafinil not only affects ‘cold’ cognition, but also improves ‘hot’ cognition, such as emotion recognition and task-related motivation. The lifestyle use of ‘smart drugs' raises both safety concerns as well as ethical issues, including coercion and increasing disparity in society. As a society, we need to consider which forms of cognitive enhancement (e.g. pharmacological, exercise, lifelong learning) are acceptable and for which groups (e.g. military, doctors) under what conditions (e.g. war, shift work) and by what methods we would wish to improve and flourish. PMID:26240429

  18. Cognitive Systematicity of Semantic Change: Cross-Linguistic Evidence

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    Baseel A. AlBzour

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Banking on intrinsic generative assumptions of cognitive semantics, this paper is a humble attempt that specifically sheds light on some major aspects of overtly intricate yet covertly systematic interaction that steers our conceptual processing of inherent semantic and pragmatic changes. The basic premises of such cognitive operations stem from yet may exceed the limitations of Elizabeth Traugott’s and Eve Sweetser’s historical pragmatic approach that elaborately envisages such lexical changes as meaning relations with their metaphorically polysemous progress in light of relevant epistemic constraints that can help us decode ambiguous components of some functional and lexical categories. Therefore, this paper examines in principle how schematic lexical meaning can be cross-linguistically and cross-culturally traced, handled and perceived in order to cater for an optimal matrix and some rule-governed clues and rules that may explain the internal universal design and flow of semanticity and pragmaticity in charge of such linguistic behavior. The data this study exploits and explores draw on some English and Arabic representative examples that can satisfactorily exhibit an interesting well-established cognitive mechanism that can reveal the role of Homo sapiens’ encyclopedic and collective faculty vis-à-vis such word processing; the data primarily encompass the English words silly, simple, innocent and naïve as well as their Arabic counterparts. Keywords: Semantics; pragmatics; cognitive processing; Sweetser; Traugott; schemata; cross-linguistic evidence

  19. What changes in cognitive therapy for depression? An examination of cognitive therapy skills and maladaptive beliefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adler, Abby D; Strunk, Daniel R; Fazio, Russell H

    2015-01-01

    This study examined effortful cognitive skills and underlying maladaptive beliefs among patients treated with cognitive therapy (CT) for depression. Depressed patients (n=44) completed cognitive measures before and after 16 weeks of CT. Measures included an assessment of CT skills (Ways of Responding Scale; WOR), an implicit test of maladaptive beliefs (Implicit Association Test; IAT), and a self-report questionnaire of maladaptive beliefs (Dysfunctional Attitude Scale; DAS). A matched sample of never-depressed participants (n=44) also completed study measures. Prior to treatment, depressed patients endorsed significantly more undesirable cognitions on the WOR, IAT, and DAS compared with never-depressed participants. Patients displayed improvement on the WOR and DAS over the course of treatment, but showed no change on the IAT. Additionally, improvements on the WOR and DAS were each related to greater reductions in depressive symptoms. Results suggest that the degree of symptom reduction among patients participating in CT is related to changes in patients' acquisition of coping skills requiring deliberate efforts and reflective thought, but not related to reduced endorsement of implicitly assessed maladaptive beliefs.

  20. Effects of cognitive training on change in accuracy in inductive reasoning ability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boron, Julie Blaskewicz; Turiano, Nicholas A; Willis, Sherry L; Schaie, K Warner

    2007-05-01

    We investigated cognitive training effects on accuracy and number of items attempted in inductive reasoning performance in a sample of 335 older participants (M = 72.78 years) from the Seattle Longitudinal Study. We assessed the impact of individual characteristics, including chronic disease. The reasoning training group showed significantly greater gain in accuracy and number of attempted items than did the comparison group; gain was primarily due to enhanced accuracy. Reasoning training effects involved a complex interaction of gender, prior cognitive status, and chronic disease. Women with prior decline on reasoning but no heart disease showed the greatest accuracy increase. In addition, stable reasoning-trained women with heart disease demonstrated significant accuracy gain. Comorbidity was associated with less change in accuracy. The results support the effectiveness of cognitive training on improving the accuracy of reasoning performance.

  1. Non-invasive brain stimulation: enhancing motor and cognitive functions in healthy old subjects

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    Maximo Zimerman

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Healthy aging is accompanied by changes in cognitive and motor functions that result in impairment of activities of daily living. This process involves a number of modifications in the brain and is associated with metabolic, structural and physiological changes; some of these serving as adaptive responses to the functional declines. Up to date there are no universally accepted strategies to ameliorate declining functions in this population. An essential basis to develop such strategies is a better understanding of neuroplastic changes during healthy aging. In this context, non-invasive brain stimulation techniques, such as transcranial direct current or transcranial magnetic stimulation, provide an attractive option to modulate cortical neuronal assemblies, even with subsequent changes in neuroplasticity. Thus, in the present review we discuss the use of these techniques as a tool to study underlying cortical mechanisms during healthy aging and as an interventional strategy to enhance declining functions and learning abilities in aged subjects.

  2. Social Cognitive Determinants of Dietary Behavior Change in University Employees

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shawna eDoerksen

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Many adults have poor dietary habits and few studies have focused on mechanisms underlying these behaviors. This study examined psychosocial determinants of dietary behavior change in university employees across a 5-month period. Participants completed measures of fruit and vegetable and low-fat food consumption and social cognitive constructs. Multiple regression analyses accounted for a unique proportion of variation in dietary change. Outcome expectations significantly predicted fruit and vegetable and low-fat consumption. Self-efficacy significantly predicted low-fat consumption. Goals were not associated with dietary behaviors. Further research into implementation strategies may provide insight into how goals work to bring about change.

  3. Social cognitive determinants of dietary behavior change in university employes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doerksen, Shawna E; McAuley, Edward

    2014-01-01

    Many adults have poor dietary habits and few studies have focused on mechanisms underlying these behaviors. This study examined psychosocial determinants of dietary behavior change in university employes across a 5-month period. Participants completed measures of fruit and vegetable consumption (FVC) and low fat food consumption (LFC) and social cognitive constructs. Multiple regression analyses accounted for a unique proportion of variation in dietary change. Outcome expectations significantly predicted FVC and LFC. Self-efficacy significantly predicted LFC. Goals were not associated with dietary behaviors. Further research into implementation strategies may provide insight into how goals work to bring about change.

  4. Notes from Underground: Are cognitive-enhancing drugs respecting their promises?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank Larøi

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive deficits are increasingly acknowledged as a highly relevant clinical feature of schizophrenia, susceptible of therapeutic intervention. Considerable efforts have been devoted to identify and develop pharmacological agents that provide cognitive-enhancing benefits to patients with schizophrenia. However, results from studies are not univocal and the “real world” cognitive functioning gain provided by these agents seems disappointingly modest. Three issues are crucial in this respect. First, there is no convincing evidence that atypical agents are any better than typical agents in improving cognitive functioning. Second, even though studies observe statistically significant treatment effects on cognition, these gains are poor or imperceptible on a clinical and functional level. Third, studies do not report differences in treatment effect compared to placebo effect in terms of their cognitive enhancing effects. Finally, examples of interventions that do provide important and meaningful improvements in cognitive functioning in schizophrenia patients will be briefly presented.

  5. Falsification, Anomalies and the Naturalistic Approach to Cognitive Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohlsson, Stellan

    It is generally assumed that the extraordinary impact of Thomas Kuhn's essay about scientific revolutions was due to the novelty of his concept of anomaly-driven paradigm shifts. However, this concept is similar to Karl Popper's idea of falsification, proposed three decades earlier. If so, why the impact? Kuhn's most significant contribution, and perhaps only novelty, was his naturalism. Kuhn conceptualized theory change, not in terms of logical relations between theory and data, but as a temporal process that happens to scientists as a consequence of the activities they engage in. This approach broke with the idealistic tradition in philosophy but harmonized with the emerging cognitive sciences. However, idealistic concepts still linger. To complete Kuhn's revolution, we should learn to conceptualize all types of cognitive change, including science learning, as a side effect of activity.

  6. Enrichment Effects on Adult Cognitive Development: Can the Functional Capacity of Older Adults Be Preserved and Enhanced?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertzog, Christopher; Kramer, Arthur F; Wilson, Robert S; Lindenberger, Ulman

    2008-10-01

    In this monograph, we ask whether various kinds of intellectual, physical, and social activities produce cognitive enrichment effects-that is, whether they improve cognitive performance at different points of the adult life span, with a particular emphasis on old age. We begin with a theoretical framework that emphasizes the potential of behavior to influence levels of cognitive functioning. According to this framework, the undeniable presence of age-related decline in cognition does not invalidate the view that behavior can enhance cognitive functioning. Instead, the course of normal aging shapes a zone of possible functioning, which reflects person-specific endowments and age-related constraints. Individuals influence whether they function in the higher or lower ranges of this zone by engaging in or refraining from beneficial intellectual, physical, and social activities. From this point of view, the potential for positive change, or plasticity, is maintained in adult cognition. It is an argument that is supported by newer research in neuroscience showing neural plasticity in various aspects of central nervous system functioning, neurochemistry, and architecture. This view of human potential contrasts with static conceptions of cognition in old age, according to which decline in abilities is fixed and individuals cannot slow its course. Furthermore, any understanding of cognition as it occurs in everyday life must make a distinction between basic cognitive mechanisms and skills (such as working-memory capacity) and the functional use of cognition to achieve goals in specific situations. In practice, knowledge and expertise are critical for effective functioning, and the available evidence suggests that older adults effectively employ specific knowledge and expertise and can gain new knowledge when it is required. We conclude that, on balance, the available evidence favors the hypothesis that maintaining an intellectually engaged and physically active lifestyle

  7. Enhancing cognitive functioning in the elderly: multicomponent vs resistance training

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    Forte R

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Roberta Forte,1,2 Colin AG Boreham,1 Joao Costa Leite,3 Giuseppe De Vito,1 Lorraine Brennan,3 Eileen R Gibney,3 Caterina Pesce21Institute for Sport and Health, University College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland; 2Department of Human Movement and Sport Science, University of Rome "Foro Italico," Rome, Italy; 3Institute of Food and Health, University College Dublin, Dublin, IrelandPurpose: The primary purpose of this study was to compare the effects of two different exercise training programs on executive cognitive functions and functional mobility in older adults. A secondary purpose was to explore the potential mediators of training effects on executive function and functional mobility with particular reference to physical fitness gains.Methods: A sample of 42 healthy community dwelling adults aged 65 to 75 years participated twice weekly for 3 months in either: (1 multicomponent training, prioritizing neuromuscular coordination, balance, agility, and cognitive executive control; or (2 progressive resistance training for strength conditioning. Participants were tested at baseline (T1, following a 4-week control period (T2, and finally at postintervention (T3 for executive function (inhibition and cognitive flexibility and functional mobility (maximal walking speed with and without additional task requirements. Cardiorespiratory and muscular fitness were also assessed as potential mediators.Results: Indices of inhibition, the functions involved in the deliberate withholding of prepotent or automatic responses, and measures of functional mobility improved after the intervention, independent of training type. Mediation analysis suggested that different mechanisms underlie the effects of multicomponent and progressive resistance training. While multicomponent training seemed to directly affect inhibitory capacity, resistance training seemed to affect it indirectly through gains in muscular strength. Physical fitness and executive function variables did not

  8. Family enhancement of cognitive style in anxious and aggressive children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, P M; Rapee, R M; Dadds, M M; Ryan, S M

    1996-04-01

    Previous research has shown that anxious adults provide more threat interpretations of ambiguous stimuli than other clinic and nonclinic persons. We were interested in investigating if the same bias occurs in anxious children and how family processes impact on these children's interpretations of ambiguity. Anxious, oppositional, and nonclinical children and their parents were asked separately to interpret and provide plans of action to ambiguous scenarios. Afterwards, each family was asked to discuss two of these situations as a family and for the child to provide a final response. The results showed that anxious and oppositional children were both more likely to interpret ambiguous scenarios in a threatening manner. However, the two clinic groups differed in that the anxious children predominantly chose avoidant solutions whereas the oppositional children chose aggressive solutions. After family discussions, both the anxious children's avoidant plans of action and the oppositional children's aggressive plans increased. Thus, this study provides the first evidence of family enhancement of avoidant and aggressive responses in children. These results support a model of anxiety that emphasizes the development of an anxious cognitive style in the context of anxiety-supporting family processes.

  9. Cortical EEG oscillations and network connectivity as efficacy indices for assessing drugs with cognition enhancing potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahnaou, A; Huysmans, H; Jacobs, T; Drinkenburg, W H I M

    2014-11-01

    Synchronization of electroencephalographic (EEG) oscillations represents a core mechanism for cortical and subcortical networks, and disturbance in neural synchrony underlies cognitive processing deficits in neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, we investigated the effects of cognition enhancers (donepezil, rivastigmine, tacrine, galantamine and memantine), which are approved for symptomatic treatment of dementia, on EEG oscillations and network connectivity in conscious rats chronically instrumented with epidural electrodes in different cortical areas. Next, EEG network indices of cognitive impairments with the muscarinic receptor antagonist scopolamine were modeled. Lastly, we examined the efficacy of cognition enhancers to normalize those aberrant oscillations. Cognition enhancers elicited systematic ("fingerprint") enhancement of cortical slow theta (4.5-6 Hz) and gamma (30.5-50 Hz) oscillations correlated with lower activity levels. Principal component analysis (PCA) revealed a compact cluster that corresponds to shared underlying mechanisms as compared to different drug classes. Functional network connectivity revealed consistent elevated coherent slow theta activity in parieto-occipital and between interhemispheric cortical areas. In rats instrumented with depth hippocampal CA1-CA3 electrodes, donepezil elicited similar oscillatory and coherent activities in cortico-hippocampal networks. When combined with scopolamine, the cognition enhancers attenuated the leftward shift in coherent slow delta activity. Such a consistent shift in EEG coherence into slow oscillations associated with altered slow theta and gamma oscillations may underlie cognitive deficits in scopolamine-treated animals, whereas enhanced coherent slow theta and gamma activity may be a relevant mechanism by which cognition enhancers exert their beneficial effect on plasticity and cognitive processes. The findings underscore that PCA and network connectivity are valuable tools to

  10. Changes in Team Cognition after a Retention Interval: The Benefits of Mixing It up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorman, Jamie C.; Cooke, Nancy J.

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines the retention of team cognition with changes in team membership. Hypotheses are developed from shared cognition and interactive team cognition theories. We report a study of the effects of Short (3-6 weeks) versus Long (10-13 weeks) retention intervals and change (Mixed) versus no change (Intact) in team membership during the…

  11. Computational modeling in cognitive science: a manifesto for change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Addyman, Caspar; French, Robert M

    2012-07-01

    Computational modeling has long been one of the traditional pillars of cognitive science. Unfortunately, the computer models of cognition being developed today have not kept up with the enormous changes that have taken place in computer technology and, especially, in human-computer interfaces.  For all intents and purposes, modeling is still done today as it was 25, or even 35, years ago. Everyone still programs in his or her own favorite programming language, source code is rarely made available, accessibility of models to non-programming researchers is essentially non-existent, and even for other modelers, the profusion of source code in a multitude of programming languages, written without programming guidelines, makes it almost impossible to access, check, explore, re-use, or continue to develop. It is high time to change this situation, especially since the tools are now readily available to do so. We propose that the modeling community adopt three simple guidelines that would ensure that computational models would be accessible to the broad range of researchers in cognitive science. We further emphasize the pivotal role that journal editors must play in making computational models accessible to readers of their journals.

  12. Brain enhancement through cognitive training: a new insight from brain connectome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fumihiko eTaya

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Owing to the recent advances in neurotechnology and the progress in understanding of brain cognitive functions, improvements of cognitive performance or acceleration of learning process with brain enhancement systems is not out of our reach anymore, on the contrary, it is a tangible target of contemporary research. Although a variety of approaches have been proposed, we will mainly focus on cognitive training interventions, in which learners repeatedly perform cognitive tasks to improve their cognitive abilities. In this review article, we propose that the learning process during the cognitive training can be facilitated by an assistive system monitoring cognitive workloads using EEG biomarkers, and the brain connectome approach can provide additional valuable biomarkers for facilitating leaners' learning processes. For the purpose, we will introduce studies on the cognitive training interventions, EEG biomarkers for cognitive workload, and human brain connectome. As cognitive overload and mental fatigue would reduce or even eliminate gains of cognitive training interventions, a real-time monitoring of cognitive workload can facilitate the learning process by flexibly adjusting difficulty levels of the training task. Moreover, cognitive training interventions should have effects on brain sub-networks, not on a single brain region, and graph theoretical network metrics quantifying topological architecture of the brain network can differentiate with respect to individual cognitive states as well as to different individuals' cognitive abilities, suggesting that the connectome is a valuable approach for tracking the learning progress. Although only a few studies have exploited the connectome approach for studying alterations of the brain network induced by cognitive training interventions so far, we believe that it would be a useful technique for capturing improvements of cognitive functions.

  13. Does emotional reasoning change during cognitive behavioural therapy for anxiety?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berle, David; Moulds, Michelle L; Starcevic, Vladan; Milicevic, Denise; Hannan, Anthony; Dale, Erin; Viswasam, Kirupamani; Brakoulias, Vlasios

    2016-01-01

    Emotional reasoning refers to the use of subjective emotions, rather than objective evidence, to form conclusions about oneself and the world. It is a key interpretative bias in cognitive models of anxiety disorders and appears to be especially evident in individuals with anxiety disorders. However, the amenability of emotional reasoning to change during treatment has not yet been investigated. We sought to determine whether emotional reasoning tendencies change during a course of routine cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). Emotional reasoning tendencies were assessed in 36 individuals with a primary anxiety disorder who were seeking treatment at an outpatient clinic. Changes in anxiety and depressive symptoms as well as emotional reasoning tendencies after 12 sessions of CBT were examined in 25 individuals for whom there was complete data. Emotional reasoning tendencies were evident at pretreatment assessment. Although anxiety and depressive symptoms decreased during CBT, only one of six emotional reasoning interpretative styles (pertaining to conclusions that one is incompetent) changed significantly during the course of therapy. Attrition rates were high and there was not enough information regarding the extent to which therapy specifically focused on addressing emotional reasoning tendencies. Individuals seeking treatment for anxiety disorders appear to engage in emotional reasoning, however routine individual CBT does not appear to result in changes in emotional reasoning tendencies.

  14. Volume changes in Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment: cognitive associations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Evans, Matthew C.; Barnes, Josephine; Nielsen, Casper; Clegg, Shona L.; Blair, Melanie; Douiri, Abdel; Boyes, Richard G.; Fox, Nick C. [UCL Institute of Neurology, Dementia Research Centre, London (United Kingdom); Kim, Lois G. [UCL Institute of Neurology, Dementia Research Centre, London (United Kingdom); London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London (United Kingdom); Leung, Kelvin K.; Ourselin, Sebastien [UCL Institute of Neurology, Dementia Research Centre, London (United Kingdom); University College London, Centre for Medical Image Computing, London (United Kingdom)

    2010-03-15

    To assess the relationship between MRI-derived changes in whole-brain and ventricular volume with change in cognitive scores in Alzheimer's disease (AD), mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and control subjects. In total 131 control, 231 MCI and 99 AD subjects from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) cohort with T1-weighted volumetric MRIs from baseline and 12-month follow-up were used to derive volume changes. Mini mental state examination (MMSE), Alzheimer's disease assessment scale (ADAS)-cog and trails test changes were calculated over the same period. Brain atrophy rates and ventricular enlargement differed between subject groups (p < 0.0005) and in MCI and AD were associated with MMSE changes. Both measures were additionally associated with ADAS-cog and trails-B in MCI patients, and ventricular expansion was associated with ADAS-cog in AD patients. Brain atrophy (p < 0.0005) and ventricular expansion rates (p = 0.001) were higher in MCI subjects who progressed to AD within 12 months of follow-up compared with MCI subjects who remained stable. MCI subjects who progressed to AD within 12 months had similar atrophy rates to AD subjects. Whole-brain atrophy rates and ventricular enlargement differed between patient groups and healthy controls, and tracked disease progression and psychological decline, demonstrating their relevance as biomarkers. (orig.)

  15. Using cognitive behavioural therapy with complex cases: using the therapeutic relationship to change core beliefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binnie, James

    2012-07-01

    Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is often perceived as a manualised, symptom focused, surface level approach. This article aims to reflect on working with complex clinical presentations and explore how third wave CBT can be effectively integrated into standard cognitive behavioural interventions. To achieve these aims, a case study of a CBT assessment and treatment is presented. The interventions used are described in detail. The focus changes from the more traditional symptom-led interventions to third wave approaches based on the therapeutic relationship. When the focus was redirected towards the therapeutic relationship then real change occurred, quickly and powerfully. Reflections on the process are discussed and the overall approach used was evaluated with an action plan developed to enhance future clinical practice. It is hoped that this study can help CBT be viewed as a comprehensive form of psychotherapy.

  16. Robot Enhancement of Cognitive and Ethical Capabilities of Humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fosch Villaronga, Eduard; Kalipalya-Mruthyunjaya, Vishwas; Seibt, Johanna; Norskov, Marco; Andersen, Soren Schack

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to mold and materialize the future of learning. The paper introduces a Modular Cognitive Educator System (MCES), which aims to help people learn cognitive and ethical capabilities to face one of the indirect impacts of the robot revolution, namely, its impact on the educatio

  17. Psychological, cognitive, and interpersonal correlates of attributional change in adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, J A; Kaslow, N J; Seeley, J; Lewinsohn, P

    2000-06-01

    Examined the role of attributional style in adolescent's psychological functioning. Specifically, we examined the cross-sectional correlates of attributional style, as well as the correlates of changes in attributional style over time. A sample of 841 adolescents with either maladaptive or adaptive attributional styles completed a battery of self-report measures at 2 points in time, 1 year apart. Measures assessed depressive symptoms and suicidality, cognitive functioning (self-esteem, pessimism, coping skills), and interpersonal functioning (social competence, conflict with parents, social support from family and friends). Results indicated that attributional style is associated with multiple depression-related variables. In addition, youth experienced significant changes in their attributional styles over time (from adaptive to maladaptive and vice versa). Finally, changes in attributional style were associated with changes in psychological symptoms and other psychosocial variables. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for the prevention and treatment of adolescent depression.

  18. Cognitive function in childhood and lifetime cognitive change in relation to mental wellbeing in four cohorts of older people.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catharine R Gale

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Poorer cognitive ability in youth is a risk factor for later mental health problems but it is largely unknown whether cognitive ability, in youth or in later life, is predictive of mental wellbeing. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether cognitive ability at age 11 years, cognitive ability in later life, or lifetime cognitive change are associated with mental wellbeing in older people. METHODS: We used data on 8191 men and women aged 50 to 87 years from four cohorts in the HALCyon collaborative research programme into healthy ageing: the Aberdeen Birth Cohort 1936, the Lothian Birth Cohort 1921, the National Child Development Survey, and the MRC National Survey for Health and Development. We used linear regression to examine associations between cognitive ability at age 11, cognitive ability in later life, and lifetime change in cognitive ability and mean score on the Warwick Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale and meta-analysis to obtain an overall estimate of the effect of each. RESULTS: People whose cognitive ability at age 11 was a standard deviation above the mean scored 0.53 points higher on the mental wellbeing scale (95% confidence interval 0.36, 0.71. The equivalent value for cognitive ability in later life was 0.89 points (0.72, 1.07. A standard deviation improvement in cognitive ability in later life relative to childhood ability was associated with 0.66 points (0.39, 0.93 advantage in wellbeing score. These effect sizes equate to around 0.1 of a standard deviation in mental wellbeing score. Adjustment for potential confounding and mediating variables, primarily the personality trait neuroticism, substantially attenuated these associations. CONCLUSION: Associations between cognitive ability in childhood or lifetime cognitive change and mental wellbeing in older people are slight and may be confounded by personality trait differences.

  19. Cognitive Enhancement Therapy for Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Results of an 18-Month Feasibility Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eack, Shaun M.; Greenwald, Deborah P.; Hogarty, Susan S.; Bahorik, Amber L.; Litschge, Maralee Y.; Mazefsky, Carla A.; Minshew, Nancy J.

    2013-01-01

    Adults with autism experience significant impairments in social and non-social information processing for which few treatments have been developed. This study conducted an 18-month uncontrolled trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (CET), a comprehensive cognitive rehabilitation intervention, in 14 verbal adults with autism spectrum disorder to…

  20. Physical activity and enhanced fitness to improve cognitive function in older people without known cognitive impairment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Angevaren, Maaike; Aufdemkampe, Geert; Verhaar, H. J. J.; Aleman, A.; Vanhees, Luc

    2008-01-01

    Background Physical activity is beneficial for healthy ageing. It may also help maintain good cognitive function in older age. Aerobic activity improves cardiovascular fitness, but it is not known whether this sort of fitness is necessary for improved cognitive function. Studies in which activity, f

  1. Cognitive style and the interpretation of organisational change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Swart

    1998-06-01

    Full Text Available The ability of individuals to interpret change is considered to be a criterion for successful organisational change. Accordingly the influence of a specific infra-individual variable, i.e. cognitive style (field dependence and independence on the sensitivity to identify change needs, was assessed. For this purpose the Organisational Change Interpretation Scale (OCIS was constructed. The OCIS in conjunction with the Hidden Figures Test, a measure of field independence, and the Field Dependence Questionnaire, a measure of field dependence, were administered to 307 managers within 14 industries. It was found that the cognitive restructuring process as measured by the Hidden Figures Test, explains 72% of the variance of the interpretation of change, as measured by the OCIS. It was concluded that the OCIS could be utilised as a selection instrument for the identification of change agents.Opsomming Die vermoe van individue om verandering te interpreteer, kan as kriterium vir suksesvolle organisasie verandering beskou word. Op grond hiervan is die invloed van 'n spesifieke intra-individuele veranderlike, naamlik kognitiewe styl (veldafhanklikheid en -onafhanklikheid op die sensitiwiteit vir die identifisering van veranderingsbehoeftes, ondersoek. Vir hierdie doel is die Organisasie Verandering Interpretasieskaal (OVIS gekonstrueer. Die OVIS is in samehang met die Versteekte Figure Toets as meting van veldonafhanklikheid, en die Veldafhanklikheidsvraelys as meting van veldafhanklikheid, op 307 bestuurders in 14 industriee geadministreer. Daar is bevind dat die kognitiewe herstruktureringsproses, soos gemeet deur die Versteekte Figure Toets, 72% van die variansie in die interpretasie van verandering, soos gemeet deur die OVIS, verklaar. Die afleiding word gemaak dat die OVIS onder andere nuttig as keuringsinstrument ter identifisering van veranderingsagente gebruik kan word.

  2. Crosswords to computers: a critical review of popular approaches to cognitive enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jak, Amy J; Seelye, Adriana M; Jurick, Sarah M

    2013-03-01

    Cognitive enhancement strategies have gained recent popularity and have the potential to benefit clinical and non-clinical populations. As technology advances and the number of cognitively healthy adults seeking methods of improving or preserving cognitive functioning grows, the role of electronic (e.g., computer and video game based) cognitive training becomes more relevant and warrants greater scientific scrutiny. This paper serves as a critical review of empirical evaluations of publically available electronic cognitive training programs. Many studies have found that electronic training approaches result in significant improvements in trained cognitive tasks. Fewer studies have demonstrated improvements in untrained tasks within the trained cognitive domain, non-trained cognitive domains, or on measures of everyday function. Successful cognitive training programs will elicit effects that generalize to untrained, practical tasks for extended periods of time. Unfortunately, many studies of electronic cognitive training programs are hindered by methodological limitations such as lack of an adequate control group, long-term follow-up and ecologically valid outcome measures. Despite these limitations, evidence suggests that computerized cognitive training has the potential to positively impact one's sense of social connectivity and self-efficacy.

  3. A Randomized Clinical Trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy for Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-10-01

    This project is focused on conducting the first randomized-controlled trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (CET) in 54 verbal adults with autism ...of the neuroplastic effects of CET on brain function in support of cognitive enhancement in adult autism . Analyses of treatment effects to date...the need and potential for CET to be a significant treatment advance for verbal adults with autism . Importantly, improvements were found in daily life function and in brain circuitry supporting core abilities.

  4. Cognitive changes in cardiovascular patients following a tailored behavioral smoking cessation intervention

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oort, FJ; Dijkstra, A; de Haes, JCJM; Legemate, DA; Smets, EMA

    2005-01-01

    Background. Action aimed at changing smoking behavior to prevent cardiovascular patients from further impairing their health is advisable. Cognitive behavioral interventions can be effective in this regard since they attempt to influence cognitive determinants that presumably lead to smoking cessati

  5. Changes in Cognitive Performance Are Associated with Changes in Sleep in Older Adults With Insomnia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilckens, Kristine A; Hall, Martica H; Nebes, Robert D; Monk, Timothy H; Buysse, Daniel J

    2016-01-01

    The present study examined sleep features associated with cognition in older adults and examined whether sleep changes following insomnia treatment were associated with cognitive improvements. Polysomnography and cognition (recall, working memory, and reasoning) were assessed before and after an insomnia intervention (Brief Behavioral Treatment of Insomnia [BBTI] or information control [IC]) in 77 older adults with insomnia. Baseline wake-after-sleep-onset (WASO) was associated with recall. Greater NREM (nonrapid eye movement) delta power and lower NREM sigma power were associated with greater working memory and reasoning. The insomnia intervention did not improve performance. However, increased absolute delta power and decreased relative sigma power were associated with improved reasoning. Findings suggest that improvements in executive function may occur with changes in NREM architecture.

  6. Depressive symptoms predict cognitive decline and dementia in older people independently of cerebral white matter changes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verdelho, Ana; Madureira, Sofia; Moleiro, Carla

    2013-01-01

    Depressive symptoms (DS) have been associated with increased risk of cognitive decline. Our aim was to evaluate the longitudinal influence of DS on cognition in independent older people, accounting for the severity of white matter changes (WMC).......Depressive symptoms (DS) have been associated with increased risk of cognitive decline. Our aim was to evaluate the longitudinal influence of DS on cognition in independent older people, accounting for the severity of white matter changes (WMC)....

  7. Use of cognitive enhancers for mild cognitive impairment: protocol for a systematic review and network meta-analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tricco Andrea C

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Elderly individuals who have memory problems without significant limitations in activities of daily living are often diagnosed as having mild cognitive impairment (MCI. Some of these individuals progress to dementia. Several cognitive enhancers (for example donepezil, galantamine, rivastigmine, memantine have been approved for use in people with Alzheimer’s dementia but their use in patients with MCI is unclear. We aimed to determine the comparative effectiveness, safety, and cost of cognitive enhancers for MCI through a systematic review and network (that is, indirect comparisons meta-analysis. Design/Methods We will include studies that examine the use of cognitive enhancers compared to placebo, supportive care, or other cognitive enhancers among patients diagnosed with MCI. Outcomes of interest include cognition and function (primary outcomes, as well as behavior, quality of life, safety, and cost (secondary outcomes. We will include all experimental studies (randomized controlled trials, quasi-randomized controlled trials, controlled clinical trials, quasi-experimental studies (controlled before-after, interrupted time series, and observational studies (cohort, case–control. Studies will be included regardless of publication status (that is, we will include unpublished studies, year, or language of dissemination. To identify potentially relevant material, we will search the following electronic databases from inception onwards: MEDLINE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, EMBASE, CINAHL, and Ageline. The electronic database search will be supplemented by scanning the reference lists of included studies, searching Google and organization websites for unpublished or difficult to locate material literature, and contacting experts. Two reviewers will independently screen the studies for inclusion using the eligibility criteria established a priori and independently extract data. Risk of bias will be assessed

  8. Video game training enhances cognition of older adults: a meta-analytic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toril, Pilar; Reales, José M; Ballesteros, Soledad

    2014-09-01

    It has been suggested that video game training enhances cognitive functions in young and older adults. However, effects across studies are mixed. We conducted a meta-analysis to examine the hypothesis that training healthy older adults with video games enhances their cognitive functioning. The studies included in the meta-analysis were video game training interventions with pre- and posttraining measures. Twenty experimental studies published between 1986 and 2013, involving 474 trained and 439 healthy older controls, met the inclusion criteria. The results indicate that video game training produces positive effects on several cognitive functions, including reaction time (RT), attention, memory, and global cognition. The heterogeneity test did not show a significant heterogeneity (I(2) = 20.69%) but this did not preclude a further examination of moderator variables. The magnitude of this effect was moderated by methodological and personal factors, including the age of the trainees and the duration of the intervention. The findings suggest that cognitive and neural plasticity is maintained to a certain extent in old age. Training older adults with video games enhances several aspects of cognition and might be a valuable intervention for cognitive enhancement.

  9. The importance of need for cognition and educational experience in enhanced and standard substance abuse treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Czuchry, Michael; Dansereau, Donald F

    2004-06-01

    The current study examined the relationship between need for cognition (i.e., cognitive motivation or "will") and educational experience (i.e., cognitive ability or "skill") to perceived improvements during treatment of probationers receiving residential treatment within the criminal justice system. Probationers were randomly assigned to either receive motivational activities developed by the authors (the "enhanced" condition), or treatment as usual (but with access to general reading materials in lieu of the motivational activities). Need for cognition and educational experience were assessed and used as blocking variables, and ratings of progress were assessed midway and toward the end of treatment. The results indicate that both need for cognition and educational experience are important predictors of improvement during treatment, and that the motivational activities developed by the authors were particularly valuable for clients with lower levels of need for cognition.

  10. A composite measure of cognitive and functional progression in Alzheimer's disease: Design of the Capturing Changes in Cognition study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    R.J. Jutten (Roos); Harrison, J. (John); F.J. De Jong (Frank J.); A. Aleman (André); Ritchie, C.W. (Craig W.); P. Scheltens (Philip); Sikkes, S.A.M. (Sietske A.M.)

    2017-01-01

    markdownabstract__Introduction__ Cognitive testing in Alzheimer's disease (AD) is essential for establishing diagnosis, monitoring progression, and evaluating treatments. Assessments should ideally be brief, reliable, valid, and reflect clinically meaningful changes. There is a lack of instruments t

  11. Socio-economic position early in life, cognitive development and cognitive change from young adulthood to middle age

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Osler, Merete; Avlund, Kirsten; Mortensen, Erik Lykke

    2013-01-01

    We examine the influence of social circumstances early in life on changes in cognitive function from young adulthood to middle age, and we explore the impact of birth characteristics, childhood activities, education and adult social class on the expected relationship....

  12. Smart drugs and synthetic androgens for cognitive and physical enhancement: revolving doors of cosmetic neurology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frati, Paola; Kyriakou, Chrystalla; Del Rio, Alessandro; Marinelli, Enrico; Vergallo, Gianluca Montanari; Zaami, Simona; Busardò, Francesco P

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive enhancement can be defined as the use of drugs and/or other means with the aim to improve the cognitive functions of healthy subjects in particular memory, attention, creativity and intelligence in the absence of any medical indication. Currently, it represents one of the most debated topics in the neuroscience community. Human beings always wanted to use substances to improve their cognitive functions, from the use of hallucinogens in ancient civilizations in an attempt to allow them to better communicate with their gods, to the widespread use of caffeine under various forms (energy drinks, tablets, etc.), to the more recent development of drugs such as stimulants and glutamate activators. In the last ten years, increasing attention has been given to the use of cognitive enhancers, but up to now there is still only a limited amount of information concerning the use, effect and functioning of cognitive enhancement in daily life on healthy subjects. The first aim of this paper was to review current trends in the misuse of smart drugs (also known as Nootropics) presently available on the market focusing in detail on methylphenidate, trying to evaluate the potential risk in healthy individuals, especially teenagers and young adults. Moreover, the authors have explored the issue of cognitive enhancement compared to the use of Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS) in sports. Finally, a brief overview of the ethical considerations surrounding human enhancement has been examined.

  13. Use of a training program to enhance NICU nurses' cognitive abilities for assessing preterm infant behaviors and offering supportive interventions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liaw, Jen-Jiuan

    2003-06-01

    This study tested the use of a developmentally supportive care (DSC) training program in the form of videotaped and personalized instruction to increase nurses' cognitive abilities for assessing preterm infant behavioral signals and offering supportive care. The study used a two-group pre-test post-test quasi-experimental repeated measures design. The participants were 25 NICU nurses, 13 in the intervention group, and 12 in the control group. An instrument developed for the purpose of the study was a video test that measured the effectiveness of the DSC training. The video test questionnaires were administered to the participants twice with an interval of four weeks. ANCOVA controlling the baseline scores was used for data analysis. In general, the results support the hypothesis that nurses' cognitive abilities were enhanced after the DSC training. The increase in nurses' cognitive abilities is the prerequisite for behavioral change, based on the assumptions of Bandura's Social Cognitive Learning Theory (Bandura, 1986). As nurses' cognitive abilities increased, it would be possible that nurse behaviors in taking care of these preterm infants might change. Therefore, the author recommends that in order to improve NICU care quality and the outcomes of preterm infants, the concepts of developmentally supportive care be incorporated into NICU caregiving practice by educating nurses.

  14. Cognitive control in auditory working memory is enhanced in musicians

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pallesen, Karen Johanne; Brattico, Elvira; Bailey, Christopher J;

    2010-01-01

    performed better as reflected in reaction times and error rates. Musicians also had larger BOLD responses than non-musicians in neuronal networks that sustain attention and cognitive control, including regions of the lateral prefrontal cortex, lateral parietal cortex, insula, and putamen in the right...

  15. Enhanced Cognitive Rehabilitation to Treat Comorbid TBI and PTSD

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-10-01

    These practice standards have been organized into a manualized treatment, Cognitive Symptom Management and Rehabilitation Therapy (CogSMART), which...Psychological Association ( APA ) to contribute to a symposium for the APA Convention in August 2014. The 2- hour symposium entitled “Active Recovery

  16. Pharmacological Cognitive Enhancers: Comment on Smith and Farah (2011)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Glen R.; Elliott, Mark D.

    2011-01-01

    Smith and Farah (2011) provided a thought-provoking and perhaps deliberately provocative literature review of the use of stimulants to improve cognitive functioning in humans. They addressed the apparently increasing willingness of individuals mostly in the United States to use stimulants for this purpose and then summarized published literature…

  17. Cognitive enhancement with methylphenidate and modafinil: conceptual advances and societal implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dubljević V

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Veljko Dubljević,1 Christopher James Ryan2 1Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada; 2Discipline of Psychiatry and the Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW, Australia Abstract: “Cognition enhancement” (CE drugs are pharmaceuticals taken by healthy people with the aim of sustaining attention, augmenting memory, or improving other cognitive capacities. This paper focuses on two CE drugs – methylphenidate and modafinil. It analyzes their mechanism of action, the evidence for their efficacy in nonsleep deprived individuals, and reviews their adverse effects. It then addresses the normative stances and social issues surrounding CE drug use. Currently, there is little evidence that either methylphenidate or modafinil provide any useful cognitive enhancement to well-rested users. However, it is very possible that future research may reveal cognitive benefits for these agents or for other pharmaceuticals. Public attitudes on CE mirror those evident in academic debate. Even though the majority seem to be opposed to enhancement based on issues of authenticity, utility, and fairness, a steady minority take the view that cognitive enhancer usage is both acceptable and fair. Current legal regimes do not adequately address the social phenomenon of CE use. While the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances defines limits of methylphenidate use across the globe, no such guide exists for modafinil. Keywords: cognitive enhancement, psychopharmacological neuroenhancement, Ritalin, Provigil, neuroethics

  18. Dynamics of Representational Change: Entropy, Action, and Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephen, Damian G.; Dixon, James A.; Isenhower, Robert W.

    2009-01-01

    Explaining how the cognitive system can create new structures has been a major challenge for cognitive science. Self-organization from the theory of nonlinear dynamics offers an account of this remarkable phenomenon. Two studies provide an initial test of the hypothesis that the emergence of new cognitive structure follows the same universal…

  19. Changes in cognitive state alter human functional brain networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malaak Nasser Moussa

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The study of the brain as a whole system can be accomplished using network theory principles. Research has shown that human functional brain networks during a resting state exhibit small-world properties and high degree nodes, or hubs, localized to brain areas consistent with the default mode network (DMN. However, the study of brain networks across different tasks and or cognitive states has been inconclusive. Research in this field is important because the underpinnings of behavioral output are inherently dependent on whether or not brain networks are dynamic. This is the first comprehensive study to evaluate multiple network metrics at a voxel-wise resolution in the human brain at both the whole brain and regional level under various conditions: resting state, visual stimulation, and multisensory (auditory and visual stimulation. Our results show that despite global network stability, functional brain networks exhibit considerable task-induced changes in connectivity, efficiency, and community structure at the regional level.

  20. Cognitive Enhancement Through Action Video Game Training: Great Expectations Require Greater Evidence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph eBisoglio

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Action video game training may hold promise as a cognitive intervention with the potential to enhance daily functioning and remediate impairments, but this must be more thoroughly evaluated through evidence-based practices. We review current research on the effect of action video game training on visual attention and visuospatial processing, executive functions, and learning and memory. Focusing on studies that utilize strict experimental controls and synthesize behavioral and neurophysiological data, we examine whether there is sufficient evidence to support a causal relationship between action video game training and beneficial changes in cognition. Convergent lines of behavioral and neurophysiological evidence tentatively support the efficacy of training, but the magnitude and specificity of these effects remain obscure. Causal inference is thus far limited by a lack of standardized and well-controlled methodology. Considering future directions, we suggest stringent adherence to evidence based practices and collaboration modeled after clinical trial networks. Finally, we recommend the exploration of more complex causal models, such as indirect causal relationships and interactions that may be masking true effects.

  1. Cognitive enhancement through action video game training: great expectations require greater evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisoglio, Joseph; Michaels, Timothy I; Mervis, Joshua E; Ashinoff, Brandon K

    2014-01-01

    Action video game training may hold promise as a cognitive intervention with the potential to enhance daily functioning and remediate impairments, but this must be more thoroughly evaluated through evidence-based practices. We review current research on the effect of action video game training on visual attention and visuospatial processing, executive functions, and learning and memory. Focusing on studies that utilize strict experimental controls and synthesize behavioral and neurophysiological data, we examine whether there is sufficient evidence to support a causal relationship between action video game training and beneficial changes in cognition. Convergent lines of behavioral and neurophysiological evidence tentatively support the efficacy of training, but the magnitude and specificity of these effects remain obscure. Causal inference is thus far limited by a lack of standardized and well-controlled methodology. Considering future directions, we suggest stringent adherence to evidence-based practices and collaboration modeled after clinical trial networks. Finally, we recommend the exploration of more complex causal models, such as indirect causal relationships and interactions that may be masking true effects.

  2. Turtles outsmart rapid environmental change: The role of cognition in navigation

    OpenAIRE

    Krochmal, Aaron R.; Roth, Timothy C.; Rush, Sage; Wachter, Katrina

    2016-01-01

    Animals inhabiting changing environments show high levels of cognitive plasticity. Cognition may be a means by which animals buffer the impact of environmental change. However, studies examining the evolution of cognition seldom compare populations where change is rapid and selection pressures are strong. We investigated this phenomenon by radiotracking experienced and naïve Eastern painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) as they sought new habitats when their pond was drained. Resident adults repe...

  3. Developmental continuity in reward-related enhancement of cognitive control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole M. Strang

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Adolescents engage in more risky behavior than children or adults. The most prominent hypothesis for this phenomenon is that brain systems governing reward sensitivity and brain systems governing self-regulation mature at different rates. Those systems governing reward sensitivity mature in advance of those governing self-control. This hypothesis has substantial empirical support, however, the evidence supporting this theory has been exclusively derived from contexts where self-control systems are required to regulate reward sensitivity in order to promote adaptive behavior. In adults, reward promotes a shift to a proactive control strategy and better cognitive control performance. It is unclear whether children and adolescents will respond to reward in the same way. Using fMRI methodology, we explored whether children and adolescents would demonstrate a shift to proactive control in the context of reward. We tested 22 children, 20 adolescents, and 23 adults. In contrast to our hypothesis, children, adolescents, and adults all demonstrated a shift to proactive cognitive control in the context of reward. In light of the results, current neurobiological theories of adolescent behavior need to be refined to reflect that in certain contexts there is continuity in the manner reward and cognitive control systems interact across development.

  4. Enhancing Cognitive Abilities with Comprehensive Training: A Large, Online, Randomized, Active-Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardy, Joseph L.; Nelson, Rolf A.; Thomason, Moriah E.; Sternberg, Daniel A.; Katovich, Kiefer; Farzin, Faraz; Scanlon, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Background A variety of studies have demonstrated gains in cognitive ability following cognitive training interventions. However, other studies have not shown such gains, and questions remain regarding the efficacy of specific cognitive training interventions. Cognitive training research often involves programs made up of just one or a few exercises, targeting limited and specific cognitive endpoints. In addition, cognitive training studies typically involve small samples that may be insufficient for reliable measurement of change. Other studies have utilized training periods that were too short to generate reliable gains in cognitive performance. Methods The present study evaluated an online cognitive training program comprised of 49 exercises targeting a variety of cognitive capacities. The cognitive training program was compared to an active control condition in which participants completed crossword puzzles. All participants were recruited, trained, and tested online (N = 4,715 fully evaluable participants). Participants in both groups were instructed to complete one approximately 15-minute session at least 5 days per week for 10 weeks. Results Participants randomly assigned to the treatment group improved significantly more on the primary outcome measure, an aggregate measure of neuropsychological performance, than did the active control group (Cohen’s d effect size = 0.255; 95% confidence interval = [0.198, 0.312]). Treatment participants showed greater improvements than controls on speed of processing, short-term memory, working memory, problem solving, and fluid reasoning assessments. Participants in the treatment group also showed greater improvements on self-reported measures of cognitive functioning, particularly on those items related to concentration compared to the control group (Cohen’s d = 0.249; 95% confidence interval = [0.191, 0.306]). Conclusion Taken together, these results indicate that a varied training program composed of a number of

  5. Enhanced defense against mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide attenuates age-associated cognition decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Liuji; Na, Ren; Ran, Qitao

    2014-11-01

    Increased mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is associated with Alzheimer's disease and brain aging. Peroxiredoxin 3 (Prdx3) is the key mitochondrial antioxidant defense enzyme in detoxifying H2O2. To investigate the importance of mitochondrial H2O2 in age-associated cognitive decline, we compared cognition between aged (17-19 months) APP transgenic mice and APP/Prdx3 double transgenic mice (dTG) and between old (24 months) wild-type mice and Prdx3 transgenic mice (TG). Compared with aged APP mice, aged dTG mice showed improved cognition that was correlated with reduced brain amyloid beta levels and decreased amyloid beta production. Old TG mice also showed significantly increased cognitive ability compared with old wild-type mice. Both aged dTG mice and old TG mice had reduced mitochondrial oxidative stress and increased mitochondrial function. Moreover, CREB signaling, a signaling pathway important for cognition was enhanced in both aged dTG mice and old TG mice. Thus, our results indicate that mitochondrial H2O2 is a key culprit of age-associated cognitive impairment, and that a reduction of mitochondrial H2O2 could improve cognition by maintaining mitochondrial health and enhancing CREB signaling.

  6. Enhancing Sensing and Channel Access in Cognitive Radio Networks

    KAUST Repository

    Hamza, Doha R.

    2014-06-18

    Cognitive radio technology is a promising technology to solve the wireless spectrum scarcity problem by intelligently allowing secondary, or unlicensed, users access to the primary, licensed, users\\' frequency bands. Cognitive technology involves two main tasks: 1) sensing the wireless medium to assess the presence of the primary users and 2) designing secondary spectrum access techniques that maximize the secondary users\\' benefits while maintaining the primary users\\' privileged status. On the spectrum sensing side, we make two contributions. First, we maximize a utility function representing the secondary throughput while constraining the collision probability with the primary below a certain value. We optimize therein the channel sensing time, the sensing decision threshold, the channel probing time, together with the channel sensing order for wideband primary channels. Second, we design a cooperative spectrum sensing technique termed sensing with equal gain combining whereby cognitive radios simultaneously transmit their sensing results to the fusion center over multipath fading reporting channels. The proposed scheme is shown to outperform orthogonal reporting systems in terms of achievable secondary throughput and to be robust against phase and synchronization errors. On the spectrum access side, we make four contributions. First, we design a secondary scheduling scheme with the goal of minimizing the secondary queueing delay under constraints on the average secondary transmit power and the maximum tolerable primary outage probability. Second, we design another secondary scheduling scheme based on the spectrum sensing results and the primary automatic repeat request feedback. The optimal medium access probabilities are obtained via maximizing the secondary throughput subject to constraints that guarantee quality of service parameters for the primary. Third, we propose a three-message superposition coding scheme to maximize the secondary throughput without

  7. Optionality: Social Cognitive Factors in Changing Linguistic Complexity in the Dialects of Estonia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Tamm

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Estonian dialects provide several examples of increasing and decreasing linguistic complexity. The goal of the article is to clarify the notion of optionality. Optionality is clarified by discussing its relationships with social cognition in the Estonian dialect phenomena. Examples are derived from two areas of rapid grammatical change, negation and evidentiality in Standard versus South Estonian. In languages, it is possible to derive negative and evidential interpretations without grammatical encoding by using cognitive mechanisms to derive the intended interpretation. However, languages tend to encode nega- tion and have negators. There are dialects in Estonia that optionally omit the negative auxiliary for language-internal reasons. Optionality may but need not result in an impoverished system. Some categories, such as evidentiality in Standard Estonian, are the result of enriched grammar. Evidentiality can be optionally encoded because of its interaction with social cognition. In the category of evidentiality the optionality of a grammatical form enhances the spread of a category instead of obstructing it.

  8. Enhancement of cognitive and neural functions through complex reasoning training: evidence from normal and clinical populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, Sandra B; Mudar, Raksha A

    2014-01-01

    Public awareness of cognitive health is fairly recent compared to physical health. Growing evidence suggests that cognitive training offers promise in augmenting cognitive brain performance in normal and clinical populations. Targeting higher-order cognitive functions, such as reasoning in particular, may promote generalized cognitive changes necessary for supporting the complexities of daily life. This data-driven perspective highlights cognitive and brain changes measured in randomized clinical trials that trained gist reasoning strategies in populations ranging from teenagers to healthy older adults, individuals with brain injury to those at-risk for Alzheimer's disease. The evidence presented across studies support the potential for Gist reasoning training to strengthen cognitive performance in trained and untrained domains and to engage more efficient communication across widespread neural networks that support higher-order cognition. The meaningful benefits of Gist training provide compelling motivation to examine optimal dose for sustained benefits as well as to explore additive benefits of meditation, physical exercise, and/or improved sleep in future studies.

  9. Enhancement of Cognitive and Neural Functions through Complex Reasoning Training: Evidence from Normal and Clinical Populations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Bond Chapman

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Public awareness of cognitive health is fairly recent compared to physical health. Growing evidence suggests that cognitive training offers promise in augmenting cognitive brain performance in normal and clinical populations. Targeting higher-order cognitive functions, such as reasoning in particular, may promote generalized cognitive changes necessary for supporting the complexities of daily life. This data-driven perspective highlights cognitive and brain changes measured in randomized clinical trials that trained gist reasoning strategies in populations ranging from teenagers to healthy older adults, individuals with brain injury to those at-risk for Alzheimer’s disease. The evidence presented across studies support the potential for Gist reasoning training to strengthen cognitive performance in trained and untrained domains and to engage more efficient communication across widespread neural networks that support higher-order cognition. The meaningful benefits of Gist training provide compelling motivation to examine optimal dose for sustained benefits as well as to explore additive benefits of meditation, physical exercise, and/or improved sleep in future studies.

  10. Common misconceptions about cognitive mediation of treatment change: a commentary to Longmore and Worrell (2007).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofmann, Stefan G

    2008-01-01

    The article by Richard J. Longmore and Michael Worrell [Clinical Psychology Review, Volume 27, 2007, pp. 173-187] reviews a selection of studies showing no significant difference between treatment conditions that include formal cognitive restructuring techniques and other behavioral treatment modalities that do not include techniques to directly challenge cognitions. Based on this literature, Longmore and Worrell question the validity of the cognitive behavioral treatment model and argue that changes in symptoms are not mediated by changes in cognitions. Longmore and Worrell's arguments are based on common misconceptions about mediation models of treatment change. This commentary discusses and clarifies these misconceptions.

  11. Putative cognitive enhancers in preclinical models related to schizophrenia: the search for an elusive target.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barak, Segev; Weiner, Ina

    2011-08-01

    Several developments have converged to drive what may be called "the cognitive revolution" in drug discovery in schizophrenia (SCZ), including the emphasis on cognitive deficits as a core disabling aspect of SCZ, the increasing consensus that cognitive deficits are not treated satisfactorily by the available antipsychotic drugs (APDs), and the failure of animal models to predict drug efficacy for cognitive deficits in clinical trials. Consequently, in recent years, a paradigm shift has been encouraged in animal modeling, triggered by the NIMH sponsored Measurement and Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia (MATRICS) initiative, and intended to promote the development and use of behavioral measures in animals that can generate valid (clinically relevant) measures of cognition and thus promote the identification of cognition enhancers for SCZ. Here, we provide a non-exhaustive survey of the effects of putative cognition enhancers (PCEs) representing 10 pharmacological targets as well as antipsychotic drugs (APDs), on SCZ-mimetic drugs (NMDA antagonists, muscarinic antagonist scopolamine and dopaminergic agonist amphetamine), in several tasks considered to measure cognitive processes/domains that are disrupted in SCZ (the five choice serial reaction time task, sustain attention task, working and/or recognition memory (delayed (non)matching to sample, delayed alternation task, radial arm maze, novel object recognition), reversal learning, attentional set shifting, latent inhibition and spatial learning and memory). We conclude that most of the available models have no capacity to distinguish between PCEs and APDs and that there is a need to establish models based on tasks whose perturbations lead to performance impairments that are resistant to APDs, and/or to accept APDs as a "weak gold standard". Several directions derived from the surveyed data are suggested.

  12. Serotonin1A receptors in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia: development of novel cognition-enhancing therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sumiyoshi, Tomiki; Bubenikova-Valesova, Vera; Horacek, Jiri; Bert, Bettina

    2008-10-01

    Serotonin (5-HT) receptors have been suggested to play key roles in psychosis, cognition, and mood via influence on neurotransmitters, synaptic integrity, and neural plasticity. Specifically, genetic evidence indicates that 5-HT(1A), 5-HT(2A), and 5-HT(2C) receptor single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are related to psychotic symptoms, cognitive disturbances, and treatment response in schizophrenia. Data from animal research suggest the role of 5-HT in cognition via its influence on dopaminergic, cholinergic, glutamatergic, and GABAergic function. This article provides up-to-date findings on the role of 5-HT receptors in endophenotypic variations in schizophrenia and the development of newer cognition-enhancing medications, based on basic science and clinical evidence. Imaging genetics studies on associations of polymorphisms of several 5-HT receptor subtypes with brain structure, function, and metabolism suggest a role for the prefrontal cortex and the parahippocampal gyrus in cognitive impairments of schizophrenia. Data from animal experiments to determine the effect of agonists/antagonists at 5-HT(1A), 5-HT(2A), and 5-HT(2C) receptors on behavioral performance in animal models of schizophrenia based on the glutamatergic hypothesis provide useful information. For this purpose, standard as well as novel cognitive tasks provide a measure of memory/information processing and social interaction. In order to scrutinize mixed evidence for the ability of 5-HT(1A) agonists/antagonists to improve cognition, behavioral data in various paradigms from transgenic mice overexpressing 5-HT(1A) receptors provide valuable insights. Clinical trials reporting the advantage of 5-HT(1A) partial agonists add to efforts to shape pharmacologic perspectives concerning cognitive enhancement in schizophrenia by developing novel compounds acting on 5-HT receptors. Overall, these lines of evidence from translational research will facilitate the development of newer pharmacologic strategies

  13. Children's Sleep and Cognitive Performance: A Cross-Domain Analysis of Change Over Time

    OpenAIRE

    Bub, Kristen L.; Buckhalt, Joseph A.; El-Sheikh, Mona

    2011-01-01

    Relations between changes in children's cognitive performance and changes in sleep problems were examined over a 3-year period, and family socioeconomic status, child race/ethnicity, and gender were assessed as moderators of these associations. Participants were 250 second- and third-grade (8–9 years old at Time 1) boys and girls. At each assessment, children's cognitive performance (Verbal Comprehension, Decision Speed) was measured using the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Cognitive Abilities...

  14. Enhancing the Communication of Climate Change Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somerville, R. C.; Hassol, S. J.

    2011-12-01

    Climate scientists have an important role to play in the critical task of informing the public, media and policymakers. Scientists can help in publicizing and illuminating climate science. However, this task requires combining climate science expertise with advanced communication skills. For example, it is entirely possible to convey scientific information accurately without using jargon or technical concepts unfamiliar to non-scientists. However, making this translation into everyday language is a job that few scientists have been trained to do. In this talk, we give examples from our recent experience working with scientists to enhance their ability to communicate well. Our work includes providing training, technical assistance, and communications tools to climate scientists and universities, government agencies, and research centers. Our experience ranges from preparing Congressional testimony to writing major climate science reports to appearing on television. We have also aided journalists in gathering reliable scientific information and identifying trustworthy experts. Additionally, we are involved in developing resources freely available online at climatecommunication.org. These include a feature on the links between climate change and extreme weather, a climate science primer, and graphics and video explaining key developments in climate change science.

  15. A novel neurotrophic drug for cognitive enhancement and Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qi Chen

    Full Text Available Currently, the major drug discovery paradigm for neurodegenerative diseases is based upon high affinity ligands for single disease-specific targets. For Alzheimer's disease (AD, the focus is the amyloid beta peptide (Aß that mediates familial Alzheimer's disease pathology. However, given that age is the greatest risk factor for AD, we explored an alternative drug discovery scheme that is based upon efficacy in multiple cell culture models of age-associated pathologies rather than exclusively amyloid metabolism. Using this approach, we identified an exceptionally potent, orally active, neurotrophic molecule that facilitates memory in normal rodents, and prevents the loss of synaptic proteins and cognitive decline in a transgenic AD mouse model.

  16. White matter changes and diabetes predict cognitive decline in the elderly: the LADIS study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Verdelho, A; Madureira, S; Moleiro, C;

    2010-01-01

    We aimed to study if age-related white matter changes (WMC) and vascular risk factors were predictors of cognitive decline in elderly subjects with WMC living independently.......We aimed to study if age-related white matter changes (WMC) and vascular risk factors were predictors of cognitive decline in elderly subjects with WMC living independently....

  17. Cognitive flexibility modulates maturation and music-training-related changes in neural sound discrimination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saarikivi, Katri; Putkinen, Vesa; Tervaniemi, Mari; Huotilainen, Minna

    2016-07-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that musicians show superior neural sound discrimination when compared to non-musicians, and that these changes emerge with accumulation of training. Our aim was to investigate whether individual differences in executive functions predict training-related changes in neural sound discrimination. We measured event-related potentials induced by sound changes coupled with tests for executive functions in musically trained and non-trained children aged 9-11 years and 13-15 years. High performance in a set-shifting task, indexing cognitive flexibility, was linked to enhanced maturation of neural sound discrimination in both musically trained and non-trained children. Specifically, well-performing musically trained children already showed large mismatch negativity (MMN) responses at a young age as well as at an older age, indicating accurate sound discrimination. In contrast, the musically trained low-performing children still showed an increase in MMN amplitude with age, suggesting that they were behind their high-performing peers in the development of sound discrimination. In the non-trained group, in turn, only the high-performing children showed evidence of an age-related increase in MMN amplitude, and the low-performing children showed a small MMN with no age-related change. These latter results suggest an advantage in MMN development also for high-performing non-trained individuals. For the P3a amplitude, there was an age-related increase only in the children who performed well in the set-shifting task, irrespective of music training, indicating enhanced attention-related processes in these children. Thus, the current study provides the first evidence that, in children, cognitive flexibility may influence age-related and training-related plasticity of neural sound discrimination.

  18. Effects of Quercetin Encapsulated Liposomes via Nasal Administration: A Novel Cognitive Enhancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terdthai Tong-un

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Demand for cognitive-enhancing drugs is growing. Numerous medicinal plants possessing antioxidant activity have received much attention as food supplement to improve cognitive function. Quercetin is a potent free radical scavenger and antioxidant. However, the limitations of quercetin: Rapidly metabolized is an obstacle to its use for a cognitive enhancer. In addition, the burden of blood brain barrier can be overcome by nasal administration and liposomes. In the present study, we investigated whether nasal administration of quercetin liposomes could improve spatial memory in healthy adult rats. Approach: Male Wistar rats were pretreated with quercetin liposomes, containing 0.5 mg of quercetin in 20 µL (dose = 20 µg, via right nasal cavity once daily continually for 4 weeks. Evaluation of rodent learning and memory was assessed by Morris water maze test and then all rats were sacrificed for determining the survival and cholinergic neurons densities in hippocampus. Results: Quercetin liposomes via nasal route treated rats exhibited a significant improvement in cognitive performance. In addition, nasal administration of quercetin liposomes also resulted in induced the densities of survival and cholinergic neurons in hippocampus. However, further researches about the precise underlying mechanism are still required. Conclusion: Our studies demonstrate that quercetin liposomes via nasal administration may have a candidate for cognitive enhancer in the future.

  19. A cognitive intervention to enhance institutionalized older adults' social support networks and decrease loneliness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winningham, R G; Pike, N L

    2007-11-01

    Nearly all older adults experience social losses, which can disrupt their social support networks and impair their quality of life. Events such as retirement, an inability to drive, death of a spouse and/or close life-long friends, or moving to an elder care facility may negatively affect the quality of older adults' social support networks. Low levels of perceived social support are associated with increased depression, impaired immune functioning and reduced life expectancy. Moreover, social interactions can be cognitively stimulating and may help older adults preserve their cognitive abilities. In the present study, institutionalized older adults were exposed to either a cognitive enhancement programme designed to enhance social networks or a control group. Measures of perceived social support and loneliness were administered before and after a 3-month, group-based intervention. There was a significant interaction between group and time. Those who did not participate in the intervention experienced a decrease in perceived social support and an increase in perceived loneliness. Participants in the intervention group stayed the same on the above measures. Helping older adults increase or maintain the quality of their social networks may lead to enhanced cognitive functioning, decreased depression and improved quality of life. Recommendations to help assisted living facilities, nursing homes, retirement communities and senior centres develop social and cognitive interventions are provided.

  20. Case Report: "ADHD Trainer": the mobile application that enhances cognitive skills in ADHD patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Manrique, Gonzalo; Tajima-Pozo, Kazuhiro; Montañes-Rada, Francisco

    2014-01-01

    We report the case of a 10 year old patient diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and comorbid video game addiction, who was treated with medication combined with a novel cognitive training method based on video games called TCT method. A great risk of developing video game or internet addiction has been reported in children, especially in children with ADHD. Despite this risk, we hypothesize that the good use of these new technologies might be useful to develop new methods of cognitive training. The cognitive areas in which a greater improvement was observed through the use of video games were visuospatial working memory and fine motor skills. TCT method is a cognitive training method that enhances cognitive skills such as attention, working memory, processing speed, calculation ability, reasoning, and visuomotor coordination. The purpose of reviewing this case is to highlight that regular cognitive computerized training in ADHD patients may improve some of their cognitive symptoms and might be helpful for treating video game addiction.

  1. Impact of Throughput in Enhancing the Efficiency of Cognitive Radio Ad Hoc Network - A Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Jayaraj

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive Radio Ad Hoc Networks (CRAHNs constitute a viable solution to solve the current problems of inefficiency in the spectrum allocation, and to deploy highly reconfigurable and self-organizing wireless networks. Cognitive Radio (CR devices are envisaged to utilize the spectrum in an opportunistic way by dynamically accessing different licensed portions of the spectrum. However the phenomena of channel fading and primary cum secondary interference in cognitive radio networks does not guarantee application demands to be achieved continuously over time. Availability of limited spectrum and the inadequate spectrum resource usage necessitates a new communication standard to utilize the existing wireless spectrum opportunistically. This paper discusses currently existing mechanism for providing better efficiency by utilizing cognitive network intelligence. The frequencies used are utilized to the maximum extent without any interference. This paper aims in comparing the techniques used for enhancing the throughput in CR.

  2. Cerebrolysin enhances cognitive recovery of mild traumatic brain injury patients: double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chun-Chung; Wei, Sung-Tai; Tsaia, Shiu-Chiu; Chen, Xian-Xiu; Cho, Der-Yang

    2013-12-01

    In adults, mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI) frequently results in impairments of cognitive functions which would lead to psychological consequences in the future. Cerebrolysin is a nootropic drug, and can significantly improve cognitive function in patients with Alzheimer's disease and stroke. The purpose of this study was to investigate how Cerebrolysin therapy enhances cognitive recovery for mild traumatic brain injury patients using a double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomized phase II pilot study. Patients having head injury within 24 h sent to our hospital were screened and recruited if patients were alert and conscious, and had intracranial contusion haemorrhage. From July 2009 to June 2010, totally, thirty-two patients were recruited in the double-blinded, placebo-controlled, and randomized study. Patients were randomized to receive Cerebrolysin (Group A, once daily intravenous infusion of 30 mL Cerebrolysin over a 60-min period for 5 days) or placebo (Group B, same dosage and administration of normal saline as Group A). The primary outcome measures were differences of cognitive function including Mini-Mental Status Examination (MMSE), and Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument (CASI) scores between baseline and week 1, between baseline and week 4, and between baseline and week 12. Thirty-two patients completed the trial. For Group A, the CASI score difference between baseline and week 12 was 21.0 ± 20.4, a significantly greater change than that of Group B (7.6 ± 12.1) (p = 0.0461). Besides, drawing function (one of the domains of CASI; p = 0.0066) on week 4 and both drawing function (p = 0.0472) and long-term memory (one of the domains of CASI; p = 0.0256) on week 12 were also found to be significantly improved in the patients receiving Cerebrolysin treatment. Our results suggest that Cerebrolysin improves the cognitive function of the MTBI in patients at 3rd month after injury, especially for long-term memory and drawing function.

  3. [Neuroethics of pharmaceutical cognitive enhancement: the first ten years: current problems and practical guiding principles].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metzinger, T K

    2012-01-01

    An evaluating survey of the development of the neuroethics of pharmaceutical cognitive enhancement (PCE) during the last decade, focussing on the situation in Germany, has been undertaken. This article presents the most important conceptual problems, current substances and central ethical and legal issues. Very first guidelines and recommendations for policy-makers are formulated at the end of the text.

  4. Cognitive enhancement by self-regulation of endogenous oscillations with neurofeedback

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Enriquez Geppert, Stefanie; Huster, René J; Ros, Tomas; Wood, Guilherme; Colzato, Lorenza

    2017-01-01

    In the last years, innovations in technology and methodology, as well as increased knowledge about cortical oscillations have significantly impacted the advancement of new neurofeedback approaches. As such, sham-controlled studies, showing evidence for enhanced performance of cognition after self-re

  5. The Potential Relevance of Cognitive Neuroscience for the Development and Use of Technology-Enhanced Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard-Jones, Paul; Ott, Michela; van Leeuwen, Theo; De Smedt, Bert

    2015-01-01

    There is increasing interest in the application of cognitive neuroscience in educational thinking and practice, and here we review findings from neuroscience that demonstrate its potential relevance to technology-enhanced learning (TEL). First, we identify some of the issues in integrating neuroscientific concepts into TEL research. We caution…

  6. Alcohol Treatment and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy: Enhancing Effectiveness by Incorporating Spirituality and Religion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodge, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is an effective modality for the treatment of alcoholism. Given widespread interest in incorporating spirituality into professional treatment, this article orients practitioners to spiritually modified CBT, an approach that may enhance outcomes with some spiritually motivated clients. More specifically, by…

  7. Gray and white matter changes in subjective cognitive impairment, amnestic mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease: a voxel-based analysis study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kuniaki Kiuchi

    Full Text Available Subjective cognitive impairment may be a very early at-risk period of the continuum of dementia. However, it is difficult to discriminate at-risk states from normal aging. Thus, detection of the early pathological changes in the subjective cognitive impairment period is needed. To elucidate these changes, we employed diffusion tensor imaging and volumetry analysis, and compared subjective cognitive impairment with normal, mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. The subjects in this study were 39 Alzheimer's disease, 43 mild cognitive impairment, 28 subjective cognitive impairment and 41 normal controls. There were no statistically significant differences between the normal control and subjective cognitive impairment groups in all measures. Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment had the same extent of brain atrophy and diffusion changes. These results are consistent with the hypothetical model of the dynamic biomarkers of Alzheimer's disease.

  8. How well do caregivers detect mild cognitive change in Parkinson's disease?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naismith, Sharon L; Pereira, Marilia; Shine, James M; Lewis, Simon J G

    2011-01-01

    Using the Cambridge Behavior Inventory-Revised, this study evaluated the relationship between caregiver ratings of cognitive change and neuropsychological performance. In sixty-one nondemented patients with Parkinson's Disease (PD; mean age = 64.5 years, MMSE = 28.7), 62% met criteria for mild cognitive impairment. This group were rated as having more overall change as well as memory and behavior change. Caregiver ratings were related to poorer psychomotor speed, learning/memory, language, and executive functioning. The capacity for caregivers to rate mild cognitive change in PD may be useful to assist in early screening and intervention approaches.

  9. Clinical and Cognitive Correlates of Structural Hippocampal Change in "At-Risk" Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elcombe, Emma L; Lagopoulos, Jim; Mowszowski, Loren; Diamond, Keri; Paradise, Matthew; Hickie, Ian B; Lewis, Simon J G; Naismith, Sharon L

    2014-06-01

    With estimates of dementia expected to rise over the coming decades, there is interest in understanding the factors associated with promoting neuroprotection and limiting neurodegeneration. In this study, we examined the change in the volume of the hippocampus over a 2-month period in 34 older people "at risk" of cognitive decline (mean age = 66.8 years, 38% male). Factors that were examined included cognitive reserve, neuropsychological functioning, depression as well as a lifestyle (cognitive training) intervention. The results showed that over a 2-month period, increases in hippocampal size were associated with having higher premorbid intellect, greater occupational attainment, superior memory, and higher levels of functioning. Conversely, depression and disability were associated with decreases in hippocampal volume. Cognitive training was not associated with changes in hippocampal volume. These findings suggest that factors associated with cognitive reserve, cognition and depression may play an integral pathophysiological role in determining hippocampal volumes in "at-risk" older adults.

  10. Students' Conceptual Change in Electricity and Magnetism Using Simulations: A Comparison of Cognitive Perturbation and Cognitive Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dega, Bekele Gashe; Kriek, Jeanne; Mogese, Temesgen Fereja

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate Ethiopian physics undergraduate students' conceptual change in the concepts of electric potential and energy (EPE) and electromagnetic induction (EMI). A quasi-experimental design was used to study the effect of cognitive perturbation using physics interactive simulations (CPS) in relation to cognitive…

  11. Students' Conceptual Change in Electricity and Magnetism Using Simulations: A Comparison of Cognitive Perturbation and Cognitive Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dega, Bekele Gashe; Kriek, Jeanne; Mogese, Temesgen Fereja

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate Ethiopian physics undergraduate students' conceptual change in the concepts of electric potential and energy (EPE) and electromagnetic induction (EMI). A quasi-experimental design was used to study the effect of cognitive perturbation using physics interactive simulations (CPS) in relation to…

  12. Students apply research methods to consumer decisions about cognitive enhancing drinks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, Charles B; Hill, Katherine G; Zavilla, Anastasia R; Erickson, Cynthia A

    2014-01-01

    The goal of this class project was to provide students with a hands-on research experience that allowed autonomy, but eliminated duplication of effort and could be completed within one semester. Our resources were limited to a small supply budget and an introductory psychology subject pool. Six students from a behavioral neuroscience class tested claims made by a drink company that their product improves cognitive function. The students each chose a cognitive task for their part of the project. The tasks included the Donders Reaction Time Task, the Stroop Task, the Raven's Progressive Matrices, a short-term memory span test, the Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test and a simple measure of prefrontal EEG activity. Participants were randomly assigned to an experimental or control drink. The experimental group received the putative cognitive enhancing drink and the control group received a placebo drink that was very similar in color and taste. The two drinks shared no active ingredients. Results suggest that the putative cognitive enhancing drink did not improve performance on any of the tasks and decreased performance on the short-term memory task. These findings are discussed in regard to implications for consumers as well as further research into supplements and their ability to improve cognitive performance. Each student presented his/her results at a university-wide research conference. This project provided a rich experience in which students had the opportunity to carry out a research project from conception to presentation.

  13. Relationship between changes of body mass index (BMI) and cognitive decline in Parkinson's disease (PD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hyun Jung; Oh, Eung Seok; Lee, Ji Hee; Moon, Jung Soo; Oh, Ji Eun; Shin, Jong Wook; Lee, Kyung Jae; Baek, In Chul; Jeong, Seong-Hae; Song, Hee-Jung; Sohn, Eun Hee; Lee, Ae Young

    2012-01-01

    Decreased BMI has been reported that it may be associated with cognitive decline in the elderly. Weight loss is common in patients with PD. However, studies comparing cognitive changes according to BMI changes in PD have not been done yet. We performed this study to know a relationship between BMI changes and the rate of cognitive decline in PD. PD patients were recruited retrospectively. The patients (n=104) were divided into two groups according to BMI changes during initial 6 months of follow-up: decreased (n=52) vs. stable BMI groups (n=52). Cognitive functions were repeated until 36 months of follow-up using the Korean version of the Mini-Mental State Examination (K-MMSE) and the modified Mini-Mental State (3MS) test. We calculated the rate of cognitive decline (K-MMSE and 3MS score changes/month) and compared it between the two groups. The decreased BMI group showed lower level of cognitive function than that of stable BMI group, especially at the 36th month of follow-up (p<0.05). In addition, the rate of cognitive decline was also significantly faster in the decreased BMI group, particularly at the 36th month of follow-up (p<0.05). This study suggests that decreased BMI during initial 6 months of follow-up in PD might be a useful indicator for future risk of dementia and let clinicians predict faster rate of cognitive decline in patients with PD.

  14. Voluntary aerobic exercise increases the cognitive enhancing effects of working memory training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Andrew M; Spiegler, Kevin M; Sauce, Bruno; Wass, Christopher D; Sturzoiu, Tudor; Matzel, Louis D

    2013-11-01

    Increases in performance on tests of attention and learning are often observed shortly after a period of aerobic exercise, and evidence suggests that humans who engage in regular exercise are partially protected from age-related cognitive decline. However, the cognitive benefits of exercise are typically short-lived, limiting the practical application of these observations. Here, we explored whether physical exercise might induce lasting changes in general cognitive ability if that exercise was combined with working memory training, which is purported to broadly impact cognitive performance. Mice received either exercise treatment (6 weeks of voluntary running wheel access), working memory training (in a dual radial-arm maze), both treatments, or various control treatments. After this period of exercise, working memory training was initiated (alternating with days of exercise), and continued for several weeks. Upon completion of these treatments, animals were assessed (2-4 weeks later) for performance on four diverse learning tasks, and the aggregate performance of individual animals across all four learning tasks was estimated. Working memory training alone promoted small increases in general cognitive performance, although any beneficial effects of exercise alone had dissipated by the time of learning assessments. However, the two treatments in combination more than doubled the improvement in general cognitive performance supported by working memory training alone. Unlike the transient effects that acute aerobic exercise can have on isolated learning tasks, these results indicate that an acute period of exercise combined with working memory training can have synergistic and lasting impact on general cognitive performance.

  15. tDCS over the left prefrontal cortex enhances cognitive control for positive affective stimuli.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Anne Vanderhasselt

    Full Text Available Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS is a neuromodulation technique with promising results for enhancing cognitive information processes. So far, however, research has mainly focused on the effects of tDCS on cognitive control operations for non-emotional material. Therefore, our aim was to investigate the effects on cognitive control considering negative versus positive material. For this sham-controlled, within-subjects study, we selected a homogeneous sample of twenty-five healthy participants. By using behavioral measures and event related potentials (ERP as indexes, we aimed to investigate whether a single session of anodal tDCS of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC would have specific effects in enhancing cognitive control for positive and negative valenced stimuli. After tDCS over the left DLPFC (and not sham control stimulation, we observed more negative N450 amplitudes along with faster reaction times when inhibiting a habitual response to happy compared to sad facial expressions. Gender did not influence the effects of tDCS on cognitive control for emotional information. In line with the Valence Theory of side-lateralized activity, this stimulation protocol might have led to a left dominant (relative to right prefrontal cortical activity, resulting in augmented cognitive control specifically for positive relative to negative stimuli. To verify that tDCS induces effects that are in line with all aspects of the well known Valence Theory, future research should investigate the effects of tDCS over the left vs. right DLPFC on cognitive control for emotional information.

  16. Cognitive Enhancement Therapy in substance misusing schizophrenia: results of an 18-month feasibility trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eack, Shaun M; Hogarty, Susan S; Greenwald, Deborah P; Litschge, Maralee Y; McKnight, Summer A F; Bangalore, Srihari S; Pogue-Geile, Michael F; Keshavan, Matcheri S; Cornelius, Jack R

    2015-02-01

    Substance use is a frequent problem in schizophrenia, and although many substance misusing patients with the disorder also experience considerable cognitive impairments, such individuals have been routinely excluded from clinical trials of cognitive remediation that could support their functional and addiction recoveries. This study conducted a small-scale feasibility trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (CET) in substance misusing schizophrenia patients to assess the feasibility and efficacy of implementing comprehensive neurocognitive and social-cognitive remediation in this population. A total of 31 schizophrenia outpatients meeting addiction severity criteria for alcohol and/or cannabis use were randomized to 18months of CET or usual care. Feasibility findings indicated high degrees of satisfaction with CET, but also presented significant challenges in the recruitment and retention of substance misusing patients, with high levels of attrition (50%) over the study period, primarily due to positive symptom exacerbation. Intent-to-treat efficacy analyses showed large and significant improvements in neurocognition (d=.86), social cognition (d=1.13), and social adjustment (d=.92) favoring CET. Further, individuals treated with CET were more likely to reduce alcohol use (67% in CET vs. 25% in usual care) during treatment (p=.021). These results suggest that once engaged and stabilized, CET is a feasible and potentially effective treatment for cognitive impairments in patients with schizophrenia who misuse alcohol and/or cannabis. Substance misusing patients who are able to engage in treatment may be able to benefit from cognitive remediation, and the treatment of cognitive impairments may help improve substance use outcomes among this underserved population.

  17. Changes in physical activity and cognitive decline in older adults living in the community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yunhwan; Kim, Jinhee; Han, Eun Sook; Chae, Songi; Ryu, Mikyung; Ahn, Kwang Ho; Park, Eun Ju

    2015-01-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests that physical activity may be beneficial in preserving cognition in late life. This study examined the association between baseline and changes in physical activity and cognitive decline in community-dwelling older people. Data were from the Korean Longitudinal Study of Aging, with 2605 aged 65 years and older subjects interviewed in 2006 and followed up for 2 years. Cognitive decline was defined by calculating the Reliable Change Index using the Mini-Mental State Examination. Physical activity levels were categorized as sedentary, low, or high. Changes in physical activity were classified as inactive, decreaser, increaser, or active. Logistic regression analysis of baseline and changes in physical activity with cognitive decline was performed. Compared with the sedentary group at baseline, both the low and high activity groups were less likely to experience cognitive decline. The active (odds ratio [OR] = 0.40, 95 % confidence interval [CI] 0.23-0.68) and increaser (OR = 0.45, 95 % CI 0.27-0.74) group, compared with the inactive counterpart, demonstrated a significantly lower likelihood of cognitive decline. Older adults who remained active or increased activity over time had a reduced risk of cognitive decline. Engagement in physical activity in late life may have cognitive health benefits.

  18. Emotionally biased cognitive processes: the weakest link predicts prospective changes in depressive symptom severity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everaert, Jonas; Duyck, Wouter; Koster, Ernst H W

    2015-01-01

    Emotional biases in attention, interpretation, and memory are predictive of future depressive symptoms. It remains unknown, however, how these biased cognitive processes interact to predict depressive symptom levels in the long-term. In the present study, we tested the predictive value of two integrative approaches to model relations between multiple biased cognitive processes, namely the additive (i.e., cognitive processes have a cumulative effect) vs. the weakest link (i.e., the dominant pathogenic process is important) model. We also tested whether these integrative models interacted with perceived stress to predict prospective changes in depressive symptom severity. At Time 1, participants completed measures of depressive symptom severity and emotional biases in attention, interpretation, and memory. At Time 2, one year later, participants were reassessed to determine depressive symptom levels and perceived stress. Results revealed that the weakest link model had incremental validity over the additive model in predicting prospective changes in depressive symptoms, though both models explained a significant proportion of variance in the change in depressive symptoms from Time 1 to Time 2. None of the integrative models interacted with perceived stress to predict changes in depressive symptomatology. These findings suggest that the best cognitive marker of the evolution in depressive symptoms is the cognitive process that is dominantly biased toward negative material, which operates independent from experienced stress. This highlights the importance of considering idiographic cognitive profiles with multiple cognitive processes for understanding and modifying effects of cognitive biases in depression.

  19. Insight change in psychosis : relationship with neurocognition, social cognition, clinical symptoms and phase of illness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quee, P. J.; van der Meer, L.; Krabbendam, L.; de Haan, L.; Cahn, W.; Wiersma, D.; van Beveren, N.; Pijnenborg, G. H. M.; Mulder, C. L.; Bruggeman, R.; Aleman, A.

    2014-01-01

    Objective: Impaired insight is an important and prevalent symptom of psychosis. It remains unclear whether cognitive disturbances hamper improvements in insight. We investigated the neurocognitive, social cognitive, and clinical correlates of changes in insight. Method: One hundred and fifty-four pa

  20. Neuroanatomical changes in Parkinson's disease in relation to cognition: An update

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prakash, K. G.; Bannur, B. M.; Chavan, Madhavrao D.; Saniya, K.; Sailesh, Kumar Sai; Rajagopalan, Archana

    2016-01-01

    The pathophysiological changes underlying impairment of cognition in Parkinson's disease (PD) are complex and not fully understood till date. Hence, understanding the structural changes responsible for cognitive decline in PD is essential for early diagnosis and to offer effective treatment. In this review, we discuss the neuroanatomical changes in major brain structures responsible for cognition in PD. We have included the key findings of various studies to provide up-to-date information for better understanding of pathophysiology of PD, which will help researchers and clinicians in planning and developing new treatment methods for the benefit of PD patients. PMID:27833890

  1. Caffeine: cognitive and physical performance enhancer or psychoactive drug?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cappelletti, Simone; Piacentino, Daria; Daria, Piacentino; Sani, Gabriele; Aromatario, Mariarosaria

    2015-01-01

    Caffeine use is increasing worldwide. The underlying motivations are mainly concentration and memory enhancement and physical performance improvement. Coffee and caffeine-containing products affect the cardiovascular system, with their positive inotropic and chronotropic effects, and the central nervous system, with their locomotor activity stimulation and anxiogenic-like effects. Thus, it is of interest to examine whether these effects could be detrimental for health. Furthermore, caffeine abuse and dependence are becoming more and more common and can lead to caffeine intoxication, which puts individuals at risk for premature and unnatural death. The present review summarizes the main findings concerning caffeine's mechanisms of action (focusing on adenosine antagonism, intracellular calcium mobilization, and phosphodiesterases inhibition), use, abuse, dependence, intoxication, and lethal effects. It also suggests that the concepts of toxic and lethal doses are relative, since doses below the toxic and/or lethal range may play a causal role in intoxication or death. This could be due to caffeine's interaction with other substances or to the individuals' preexisting metabolism alterations or diseases.

  2. Analysis of solid-liquid phase change heat transfer enhancement

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张寅平; 王馨

    2002-01-01

    Solid-liquid phase change processes have two important features: the process is an approximately isothermal process and the heat of fusion of phase change material tends to be much greater than its specific heat. Therefore, if any phase change material adjacent to a hot or cold surface undergoes phase change, the heat transfer rate on the surface will be noticeably enhanced. This paper presents a novel insight into the mechanisms of heat transfer enhancement induced by solid-liquid phase change based on the analogy analysis for heat conduction with an internal heat source and solid-liquid phase change heat transfer. Three degrees of surface heat transfer enhancement for different conditions are explored, and corresponding formulae are written to describe them. The factors influencing the degrees of heat transfer enhancement are clarified and their effects quantitatively analyzed. Both the novel insight and the analysis contribute to effective application of phase change heat transfer enhancement technique.

  3. Pre-operative history of depression and cognitive changes in bariatric surgery patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alosco, Michael L; Spitznagel, Mary Beth; Strain, Gladys; Devlin, Michael; Cohen, Ronald; Crosby, Ross D; Mitchell, James E; Gunstad, John

    2015-01-01

    Obesity-associated cognitive impairments may be partially reversible through bariatric surgery. Depression, a prevalent comorbidity in bariatric surgery candidates, is linked with cognitive impairment and poorer surgical outcomes in other populations. No study has examined the effects of pre-operative depression on cognitive changes in bariatric surgery patients. Sixty-seven bariatric surgery patients completed a computerized cognitive test battery prior to surgery and 12 months post-operatively. The structured clinical interview for the DSM-IV Axis I disorders assessed major depressive disorder (MDD). Pre-surgery history of MDD was found in 47.8% of patients, but was not associated with greater baseline cognitive impairments. Repeated measures revealed improved cognitive abilities 12 months after surgery. Pre-surgery history of MDD did not influence post-operative cognitive function. Pre-operative history of MDD did not limit post-operative cognitive improvements. Larger studies with extended follow-ups are needed to clarify our findings and identify factors (e.g. older age) that may modify cognitive changes following surgery.

  4. Changes in cognitive symptoms after a buspirone-melatonin combination treatment for Major Depressive Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Targum, Steven D; Wedel, Pamela C; Fava, Maurizio

    2015-09-01

    Cognitive deficits are often associated with acute depressive episodes and contribute to the functional impairment seen in patients with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). Many patients sustain residual cognitive deficits after treatment that may be independent of the core MDD disorder. We tracked changes in cognitive deficits relative to antidepressant treatment response using the patient self-rated Massachusetts General Hospital Cognitive and Physical Functioning Questionnaire (MGH-CPFQ) during a 6-week, double-blind trial of a combination antidepressant treatment (buspirone 15 mg with melatonin-SR 3 mg) versus buspirone (15 mg) monotherapy versus placebo in MDD patients with acute depressive episodes. The CPFQ includes distinct cognitive and physical functioning dimension subscales. Treatment response was determined using the Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology (IDSc30). Treatment responders improved significantly more on the total CPFQ than non-responders (p symptoms and that some aspects of cognition may be specific targets for treatment within a population of patients with MDD.

  5. Cognitive training-induced short-term functional and long-term structural plastic change is related to gains in global cognition in healthy older adults: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampit, Amit; Hallock, Harry; Suo, Chao; Naismith, Sharon L; Valenzuela, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Computerized cognitive training (CCT) is a safe and inexpensive intervention to enhance cognitive performance in the elderly. However, the neural underpinning of CCT-induced effects and the timecourse by which such neural changes occur are unknown. Here, we report on results from a pilot study of healthy older adults who underwent three 1-h weekly sessions of either multidomain CCT program (n = 7) or an active control intervention (n = 5) over 12 weeks. Multimodal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans and cognitive assessments were performed at baseline and after 9 and 36 h of training. Voxel-based structural analysis revealed a significant Group × Time interaction in the right post-central gyrus indicating increased gray matter density in the CCT group compared to active control at both follow-ups. Across the entire sample, there were significant positive correlations between changes in the post-central gyrus and change in global cognition after 36 h of training. A post-hoc vertex-based analysis found a significant between-group difference in rate of thickness change between baseline and post-training in the left fusiform gyrus, as well as a large cluster in the right parietal lobe covering the supramarginal and post-central gyri. Resting-state functional connectivity between the posterior cingulate and the superior frontal gyrus, and between the right hippocampus and the superior temporal gyrus significantly differed between the two groups after 9 h of training and correlated with cognitive change post-training. No significant interactions were found for any of the spectroscopy and diffusion tensor imaging data. Though preliminary, our results suggest that functional change may precede structural and cognitive change, and that about one-half of the structural change occurs within the first 9 h of training. Future studies are required to determine the role of these brain changes in the mechanisms underlying CCT-induced cognitive effects.

  6. Cognitive training-induced short-term functional and long-term structural plastic change is related to gains in global cognition in healthy older adults: A pilot study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amit eLampit

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Computerized cognitive training (CCT is a safe and inexpensive intervention to enhance cognitive performance in the elderly. However, the neural underpinning of CCT-induced effects and the timecourse by which such neural changes occur are unknown. Here, we report on results from a pilot study of healthy older adults who underwent three 1-hour weekly sessions of either multidomain CCT program (n = 7 or an active control intervention (n = 5 over 12 weeks. Multimodal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI scans and cognitive assessments were performed at baseline and after 9 and 36 hours of training. Voxel-based structural analysis revealed a significant Group × Time interaction in the right postcentral gyrus indicating increased gray matter density in the CCT group compared to active control at both follow-ups. Across the entire sample, there were significant positive correlations between changes in the postcentral gyrus and change in global cognition after 36 hours of training. A post-hoc vertex-based analysis found a significant between-group difference in rate of thickness change between baseline and post-training in the left fusiform gyrus, as well as a large cluster in the right parietal lobe covering the supramarginal and postcentral gyri. Resting-state functional connectivity between the posterior cingulate and the superior frontal gyrus, and between the right hippocampus and the superior temporal gyrus significantly differed between the two groups after 9 hours of training and correlated with cognitive change post-training. No significant interactions were found for any of the spectroscopy and diffusion tensor imaging data. Though preliminary, our results suggest that functional change may precede structural and cognitive change, and that about one-half of the structural change occurs within the first nine hours of training. Future studies are required to determine the role of these brain changes in the mechanisms underlying CCT

  7. Cognitive training-induced short-term functional and long-term structural plastic change is related to gains in global cognition in healthy older adults: a pilot study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampit, Amit; Hallock, Harry; Suo, Chao; Naismith, Sharon L.; Valenzuela, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Computerized cognitive training (CCT) is a safe and inexpensive intervention to enhance cognitive performance in the elderly. However, the neural underpinning of CCT-induced effects and the timecourse by which such neural changes occur are unknown. Here, we report on results from a pilot study of healthy older adults who underwent three 1-h weekly sessions of either multidomain CCT program (n = 7) or an active control intervention (n = 5) over 12 weeks. Multimodal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans and cognitive assessments were performed at baseline and after 9 and 36 h of training. Voxel-based structural analysis revealed a significant Group × Time interaction in the right post-central gyrus indicating increased gray matter density in the CCT group compared to active control at both follow-ups. Across the entire sample, there were significant positive correlations between changes in the post-central gyrus and change in global cognition after 36 h of training. A post-hoc vertex-based analysis found a significant between-group difference in rate of thickness change between baseline and post-training in the left fusiform gyrus, as well as a large cluster in the right parietal lobe covering the supramarginal and post-central gyri. Resting-state functional connectivity between the posterior cingulate and the superior frontal gyrus, and between the right hippocampus and the superior temporal gyrus significantly differed between the two groups after 9 h of training and correlated with cognitive change post-training. No significant interactions were found for any of the spectroscopy and diffusion tensor imaging data. Though preliminary, our results suggest that functional change may precede structural and cognitive change, and that about one-half of the structural change occurs within the first 9 h of training. Future studies are required to determine the role of these brain changes in the mechanisms underlying CCT-induced cognitive effects. PMID:25805989

  8. Lactulose enhances neuroplasticity to improve cognitive function in early hepatic encephalopathy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Nan Yang; He Liu; Yao Jiang; Ji Zheng; Dong-mei Li; Chao Ji; Yan-yong Liu; Ping-ping Zuo

    2015-01-01

    Lactulose is known to improve cognitive function in patients with early hepatic encephalopa-thy; however, the underlying mechanism remains poorly understood. In the present study, we investigated the behavioral and neurochemical effects of lactulose in a rat model of early hepatic encephalopathy induced by carbon tetrachloride. Immunohistochemistry showed that lactulose treatment promoted neurogenesis and increased the number of neurons and astrocytes in the hippocampus. Moreover, lactulose-treated rats showed shorter escape latencies than model rats in the Morris water maze, indicating that lactulose improved the cognitive impairments caused by hepatic encephalopathy. The present ifndings suggest that lactulose effectively improves cog-nitive function by enhancing neuroplasticity in a rat model of early hepatic encephalopathy.

  9. Does Cognitive Style Affect Diagnosis and Intervention Strategies of Change Agents?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slocum, John W., Jr.

    1978-01-01

    A sample of 152 change agents were given 24 diagnostic questions they might ask the client organization, questions related to the change agents' cognitive styles and the tactics most likely used by the change agents to bring about organizational and/or individual change. Conclusions are compared with previous research findings. (Author)

  10. Association of late-life changes in blood pressure and cognitive status

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Maria E Lacruz; Daniel Tiller; Alexander Kluttig; Karin H Greiser; Sebastian Nuding; Karl Werdan; Johannes Haerting

    2016-01-01

    BackgroundDisagreement exists on the association between changes in blood pressure and cognitive impairment. We aimed to ex-amine whether 4-year changes in systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) are associated with cognitive status in a representative sample of older men and women.MethodsAnalysis of longitudinal data from 854 participants of a population-based German sample (aged 60-87 years) was performed with standard cognitive screening and blood pressure measurements. Effects of changes in SBP and DBP (10 mmHg and 5 mmHg respectively as unit of regression effect measure) on cognitive status were evaluated using non-parametric and lin-ear regression modeling.ResultsNo clear associations were seen between changes in SBP or in DBP and cognitive scores. Small effects were found after stratification for sex and hypertension awareness. Specifically, larger decreases in SBP were associated with higher cogni-tive scores in those men aware of their hypertension (10 mmHg decrease in SBP,b =-0.26, 95% CI:-0.51 to-0.02) and men with con-trolled hypertension (10 mmHg decrease in SBP,b =-0.44, 95% CI:-0.92 to-0.03). Additionally larger increases in DBP were associated with higher cognitive scores in men with controlled hypertension (5 mmHg increase in DBP,b = 0.67, 95% CI: 0.19-1.15). For women aware of their hypertension, larger decreases in DBP were associated with higher cognitive scores (5 mmHg decrease in DBP,b =-0.26; 95%CI:-0.51 to-0.01).ConclusionsChanges in blood pressure were only weakly associated with cognitive status. Specifically, decreases in SBP were associated with higher cognitive scores in men aware of their hypertension and especially those that were medically controlled.

  11. Methylphenidate, modafinil, and caffeine for cognitive enhancement in chess: A double-blind, randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franke, Andreas G; Gränsmark, Patrik; Agricola, Alexandra; Schühle, Kai; Rommel, Thilo; Sebastian, Alexandra; Balló, Harald E; Gorbulev, Stanislav; Gerdes, Christer; Frank, Björn; Ruckes, Christian; Tüscher, Oliver; Lieb, Klaus

    2017-03-01

    Stimulants and caffeine have been proposed for cognitive enhancement by healthy subjects. This study investigated whether performance in chess - a competitive mind game requiring highly complex cognitive skills - can be enhanced by methylphenidate, modafinil or caffeine. In a phase IV, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 39 male chess players received 2×200mg modafinil, 2×20mg methylphenidate, and 2×200mg caffeine or placebo in a 4×4 crossover design. They played twenty 15-minute games during two sessions against a chess program (Fritz 12; adapted to players' strength) and completed several neuropsychological tests. Marked substance effects were observed since all three substances significantly increased average reflection time per game compared to placebo resulting in a significantly increased number of games lost on time with all three treatments. Treatment effects on chess performance were not seen if all games (n=3059) were analysed. Only when controlling for game duration as well as when excluding those games lost on time, both modafinil and methylphenidate enhanced chess performance as demonstrated by significantly higher scores in the remaining 2876 games compared to placebo. In conjunction with results from neuropsychological testing we conclude that modifying effects of stimulants on complex cognitive tasks may in particular result from more reflective decision making processes. When not under time pressure, such effects may result in enhanced performance. Yet, under time constraints more reflective decision making may not improve or even have detrimental effects on complex task performance.

  12. Housing mobility and cognitive development: Change in verbal and nonverbal abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fowler, Patrick J; McGrath, Lauren M; Henry, David B; Schoeny, Michael; Chavira, Dina; Taylor, Jeremy J; Day, Orin

    2015-10-01

    This study investigates the influence of housing instability on verbal and nonverbal cognitive development among at-risk children and adolescents involved in the child welfare system. Frequent residential changes threaten child mental health, especially among low-income families. Little is known regarding disruptions to cognitive growth, specifically the impact on verbal and nonverbal abilities. The study tests whether developmental timing of housing mobility affects cognitive development beyond individual and family risks. A nationally representative study of families (n=2,442) susceptible to housing and family instability tracked children and adolescents aged 4-14 years (M=8.95 years) over 36 months following investigation by the child welfare system. Youth completed standardized cognitive assessments while caregivers reported on behavior problems and family risk at three time points. Latent growth models examined change in cognitive abilities over time. Housing mobility in the 12 months prior to baseline predicts lower verbal cognitive abilities that improve marginally. Similar effects emerge for all age groups; however, frequent moves in infancy diminish the influence of subsequent housing mobility on verbal tasks. Housing instability threatened cognitive development beyond child maltreatment, family changes, poverty, and other risks. Findings inform emerging research on environmental influences on neurocognitive development, as well as identify targets for early intervention. Systematic assessment of family housing problems, including through the child welfare system, provides opportunities for coordinated responses to prevent instability and cognitive threats.

  13. Cognitive Changes, Critical Sessions, and Sudden Gains in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Depression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Tony Z.; DeRubeis, Robert J.; Beberman, Rachel; Pham, Thu

    2005-01-01

    Using an independent cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) data set, the authors replicated T. Z. Tang and R. J. DeRubeis' (1999) discovery of sudden gains--sudden and large decreases in depression severity in a single between-session interval. By incorporating therapy session transcripts, the authors of this study improved the reliability of the…

  14. Cognitive enhancement or cognitive cost: trait-specific outcomes of brain stimulation in the case of mathematics anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Amar; Dowker, Ann; Cohen Kadosh, Roi

    2014-12-10

    The surge in noninvasive brain stimulation studies investigating cognitive enhancement has neglected the effect of interindividual differences, such as traits, on stimulation outcomes. Using the case of mathematics anxiety in a sample of healthy human participants in a placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover experiment, we show that identical transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) exerts opposite behavioral and physiological effects depending on individual trait levels. Mathematics anxiety is the negative emotional response elicited by numerical tasks, impairing mathematical achievement. tDCS was applied to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, a frequent target for modulating emotional regulation. It improved reaction times on simple arithmetic decisions and decreased cortisol concentrations (a biomarker of stress) in high mathematics anxiety individuals. In contrast, tDCS impaired reaction times for low mathematics anxiety individuals and prevented a decrease in cortisol concentration compared with sham stimulation. Both groups showed a tDCS-induced side effect-impaired executive control in a flanker task-a cognitive function subserved by the stimulated region. These behavioral and physiological double dissociations have implications for brain stimulation research by highlighting the role of individual traits in experimental findings. Brain stimulation clearly does not produce uniform benefits, even applied in the same configuration during the same tasks, but may interact with traits to produce markedly opposed outcomes.

  15. Cognitive Change during the Life Course and Leukocyte Telomere Length in Late Middle-Aged Men

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rask, Lene; Bendix, Laila; Harbo, Maria;

    2016-01-01

    Importance: Cognitive skills are known to decline through the lifespan with large individual differences. The molecular mechanisms for this decline are incompletely understood. Although leukocyte telomere length provides an index of cellular age that predicts the incidence of age-related diseases......, it is unclear whether there is an association between cognitive decline and leukocyte telomere length. Objective: To examine the association between changes in cognitive function during adult life and leukocyte telomere length after adjusting for confounding factors such as education, mental health and life...... style. Design, Setting, and Participants: Two groups of men with negative (n = 97) and positive (n = 93) change in cognitive performance were selected from a birth cohort of 1985 Danish men born in 1953. Cognitive performance of each individual was assessed at age ~20 and 56 years. Leukocyte telomere...

  16. Cognitive changes associated with ADT: a review of the literature

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Rhoda J Jamadar; Mary J Winters; Pauline M Maki

    2012-01-01

    The use of androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) has increased since the early 1990s after early detection efforts and greater use of the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test.Although ADT is associated with favorable clinical outcomes,ADT has been associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease,increased serum cholesterol,triglycerides,insulin resistance,body mass index and fat body mass.Here we review findings from 11 clinical studies examining the effects of ADT on cognition as measured by standardized tests in cognitive domains such as verbal and spatial memory.Most of these studies have important limitations,including small sample sizes,suboptimal control groups and baseline group differences in confounding factors.Despite these limitations,the best designed studies,those comparing patients on ADT to healthy controls,generally suggest that spatial memory might be especially sensitive to the effects of ADT.Critically,to date there is only one study involving random assignment of ADT versus close clinical observation.That study revealed a decrease in verbal memory with ADT,but was limited in sample size and did not include a measure of spatial memory.A recent observational study revealed no substantial evidence of cognitive impairment with ADT,even in the domain of verbal memory.Like the randomized study,however,this large observational study lacked a measure of spatial memory.Overall,the studies with the best controls suggest a potential negative impact of ADT on spatial memory,and perhaps verbal memory,and a need for continued investigation of the impact of ADT on cognition,particularly in these two cognitive domains.

  17. Pharmacological cognitive enhancement – how future neuroscientific research could advance ethical debate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah eMaslen

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available There are numerous ways people can improve their cognitive capacities: good nutrition and regular exercise can produce long-term improvements across many cognitive domains, whilst commonplace stimulants such as coffee temporarily boost levels of alertness and concentration. Effects like these have been well-documented in the medical literature and they raise few (if any ethical issues. More recently, however, clinical research has shown that the off-label use of some pharmaceuticals can, under certain conditions, have modest cognition-improving effects. Substances such as methylphenidate and modafinil can improve capacities such as working memory and concentration in some healthy individuals. Unlike their more mundane predecessors, these methods of ‘cognitive enhancement’ are thought to raise a multitude of ethical issues. This paper presents the six principal ethical issues raised in relation to pharmacological cognitive enhancers (PCEs – issues such as whether: (1 the medical safety-profile of PCEs justifies restricting or permitting their elective or required use; (2 the enhanced mind can be an ‘authentic’ mind; (3 individuals might be coerced into using PCEs; (4, there is a meaningful distinction to be made between the treatment versus enhancement effect of the same PCE; (5 unequal access to PCEs would have implications for distributive justice; and (6 PCE use constitutes cheating in competitive contexts. In reviewing the six principal issues, the paper discusses how future neuroscientific research might help advance the ethical debate. In particular, the paper presents new arguments about the contribution neuroscience could make to debates about justice, fairness and cheating, ultimately concluding that neuroscientific research into ‘personalised enhancement’ will be essential if policy is to be truly informed and ethical. We propose an ‘ethical agenda’ for neuroscientific research into PCEs.

  18. Bereavement and behavioral changes as risk factors for cognitive decline in adults with Down syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fonseca LM

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Luciana Mascarenhas Fonseca,1 Melaine Cristina de Oliveira,2 Laura Maria de Figueiredo Ferreira Guilhoto,3,4 Esper Abrao Cavalheiro,3,4 Cássio MC Bottino1 1Old Age Research Group, Department of Psychiatry, 2Institute of Mathematics and Statistics, University of São Paulo, 3Association of Parents and Friends of People with Intellectual Disability of São Paulo, 4Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil Background: Cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease often affect older adults with Down syndrome (DS much earlier than those in the general population. There is also growing evidence of the effects of negative life events on the mental health and behavior of individuals with intellectual disability. However, to our knowledge, this is the first study investigating objective cognitive decline following bereavement in aging individuals with DS.Objective: The objective of this study was to determine whether cognitive decline correlates with bereavement following the recent loss of a caregiver or with behavioral changes in a sample of adult individuals with DS who do not meet the criteria for dementia or depression, using the longitudinal assessment of the Cambridge Cognitive Examination (CAMCOG, together with the Informant Questionnaire on Cognitive Decline in the Elderly (IQCODE.Methods: We evaluated 18 subjects at baseline and over a follow-up period of 14–22 months, attempting to determine whether cognitive decline correlates with bereavement following the recent loss of the main caregiver or with behavioral changes (as assessed with the Neuropsychiatric Inventory.Results: The mean rate of change in CAMCOG was -1.83 (standard deviation 4.51. Behavioral changes had a significant direct influence on cognitive decline. When bereavement was accompanied by behavioral changes, the probability of cognitive decline was 87% (odds ratio 3.82. Conclusion: The occurrence of behavioral changes attributed to bereavement following the loss of

  19. Turtles outsmart rapid environmental change: The role of cognition in navigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krochmal, Aaron R; Roth, Timothy C; Rush, Sage; Wachter, Katrina

    2015-01-01

    Animals inhabiting changing environments show high levels of cognitive plasticity. Cognition may be a means by which animals buffer the impact of environmental change. However, studies examining the evolution of cognition seldom compare populations where change is rapid and selection pressures are strong. We investigated this phenomenon by radiotracking experienced and naïve Eastern painted turtles (Chrysemys picta) as they sought new habitats when their pond was drained. Resident adults repeatedly used specific routes to permanent water sources with exceptional precision, while adults translocated to the site did not. Naïve 1–3 y olds from both populations used the paths taken by resident adults, an ability lost by age 4. Experience did not, however, influence the timing of movement or the latency to begin navigation. This suggests that learning during a critical period may be important for how animals respond to changing environments, highlighting the importance of incorporating cognition into conservation. PMID:27065017

  20. Cognitive training-related changes in hippocampal activity associated with recollection in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchhoff, Brenda A; Anderson, Benjamin A; Smith, Staci E; Barch, Deanna M; Jacoby, Larry L

    2012-09-01

    Impairments in the ability to recollect specific details of personally experienced events are one of the main cognitive changes associated with aging. Cognitive training can improve older adults' recollection. However, little is currently known regarding the neural correlates of these training-related changes in recollection. Prior research suggests that the hippocampus plays a central role in supporting recollection in young and older adults, and that age-related changes in hippocampal function may lead to age-related changes in recollection. The present study investigated whether cognitive training-related increases in older adults' recollection are associated with changes in their hippocampal activity during memory retrieval. Older adults' hippocampal activity during retrieval was examined before and after they were trained to use semantic encoding strategies to intentionally encode words. Training-related changes in recollection were positively correlated with training-related changes in activity for old words in the hippocampus bilaterally. Positive correlations were also found between training-related changes in activity in prefrontal and left lateral temporal regions associated with self-initiated semantic strategy use during encoding and training-related changes in right hippocampal activity associated with recollection during retrieval. These results suggest that cognitive training-related improvements in older adults' recollection can be supported by changes in their hippocampal activity during retrieval. They also suggest that age differences in cognitive processes engaged during encoding are a significant contributor to age differences in recollection during retrieval.

  1. ADAPTIVE MODULATION AND POWER CONTROL FOR THROUGHPUT ENHANCEMENT IN COGNITIVE RADIOS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    To regulate the transmit-power and enhance the total throughput, a novel Transmit Power Control Game (TPCG) algorithm and an adaptive Modulation TPCG (M-TPCG) algorithm which combine bandwidth allocation, adaptive modulation and transmit-power control based on Space Time Block Coding (STBC) OFDM-CDMA system are designed and a cross-layer framework of database sharing is proposed. Simulation results show that the TPCG algorithm can regulate their transmitter powers and enhance the total throughput effectively, M-TPCG algorithm can achieve maximal system throughput. The performance of the cognitive radio system is improved obviously.

  2. Computational Modeling and Simulation of Attitude Change. Part 1, Connectionist Models and Simulations of Cognitive Dissonance: an Overview

    OpenAIRE

    Voinea, Camelia Florela

    2013-01-01

    Cognitive Dissonance Theory is considered part of the cognitive consistency theories in Social Psychology. They uncover a class of conceptual models which describe the attitude change as a cognitive consistency-seeking issue. As these conceptual models requested more complex operational expression, algebraic, mathematical and, lately, computational modeling approaches of cognitive consistency have been developed. Part 1 of this work provides an overview of the connectionist modeling of cognit...

  3. Statins enhance cognitive performance in object location test in albino Swiss mice: involvement of beta-adrenoceptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandresen-Filho, Samuel; França, Lucas Moreira; Alcantara-Junior, José; Nogueira, Lucas Caixeta; de Brito, Thiago Marques; Lopes, Lousã; Junior, Fernando Mesquita; Vanzeler, Maria Luzinete; Bertoldo, Daniela Bohn; Dias, Paula Gomes; Colla, André R S; Hoeller, Alexandre; Duzzioni, Marcelo; Rodrigues, Ana Lúcia S; de Lima, Thereza C M; Tasca, Carla Inês; Viola, Giordano Gubert

    2015-05-01

    Statins are inhibitors of the 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase, thereby inhibiting cell synthesis of cholesterol and isoprenoids. Moreover, several studies have been evaluating pleiotropic effects of statins, mainly because they present neuroprotective effects in various pathological conditions. However, knowledge about behavioral effects of statins per se is relatively scarce. Considering these facts, we aimed to analyze behavioral responses of atorvastatin or simvastatin-treated mice in the open field test, elevated plus maze and object location test. Atorvastatin treatment for 7 consecutive days at 1 mg/kg or 10 mg/kg (v.o.) or simvastatin 10 mg/kg or 20 mg/kg enhanced cognitive performance in object location test when compared to control group (saline-treated mice). Simvastatin effects on mice performance in the object location test was abolished by post-training infusion of the beta-adrenoceptor antagonist propranolol. Atorvastatin and simvastatin did not change the behavioral response in open field and elevated plus-maze (EPM) tests in any of the used doses. These data demonstrate the positive effects of both statins in cognitive processes in mice, without any alteration in locomotor parameters in the open field test or anxiolytic-like behavior in EPM. In conclusion, we demonstrate that atorvastatin and simvastatin per se improve the cognitive performance in a rodent model of spatial memory and this effect is related to beta-adrenergic receptors modulation.

  4. Multimodal Cognitive Enhancement Therapy for Patients with Mild Cognitive Impairment and Mild Dementia: A Multi- Center, Randomized, Controlled, Double-Blind, Crossover Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Ji Won; Lee, Hyeonggon; Hong, Jong Woo; Kim, Kayoung; Kim, Taehyun; Byun, Hye Jin; Ko, Ji Won; Youn, Jong Chul; Ryu, Seung-Ho; Lee, Nam-Jin; Pae, Chi-Un; Kim, Ki Woong

    2017-01-01

    We developed and evaluated the effect of Multimodal Cognitive Enhancement Therapy (MCET) consisting of cognitive training, cognitive stimulations, reality orientation, physical therapy, reminiscence therapy, and music therapy in combination in older people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or mild dementia. This study was a multi-center, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, two-period cross-over study (two 8-week treatment phases separated by a 4-week wash-out period). Sixty-four participants with MCI or dementia whose Clinical Dementia Rating was 0.5 or 1 were randomized to the MCET group or the mock-therapy (placebo) group. Outcomes were measured at baseline, week 9, and week 21. Fifty-five patients completed the study. Mini-Mental State Examination (effect size = 0.47, p = 0.013) and Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive Subscale (effect size = 0.35, p = 0.045) scores were significantly improved in the MCET compared with mock-therapy group. Revised Memory and Behavior Problems Checklist frequency (effect size = 0.38, p = 0.046) and self-rated Quality of Life - Alzheimer's Disease (effect size = 0.39, p = 0.047) scores were significantly improved in the MCET compared with mock-therapy. MCET improved cognition, behavior, and quality of life in people with MCI or mild dementia more effectively than conventional cognitive enhancing activities did.

  5. Brain volumetric changes and cognitive ageing during the eighth decade of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritchie, Stuart J; Dickie, David Alexander; Cox, Simon R; Valdes Hernandez, Maria Del C; Corley, Janie; Royle, Natalie A; Pattie, Alison; Aribisala, Benjamin S; Redmond, Paul; Muñoz Maniega, Susana; Taylor, Adele M; Sibbett, Ruth; Gow, Alan J; Starr, John M; Bastin, Mark E; Wardlaw, Joanna M; Deary, Ian J

    2015-12-01

    Later-life changes in brain tissue volumes--decreases in the volume of healthy grey and white matter and increases in the volume of white matter hyperintensities (WMH)--are strong candidates to explain some of the variation in ageing-related cognitive decline. We assessed fluid intelligence, memory, processing speed, and brain volumes (from structural MRI) at mean age 73 years, and at mean age 76 in a narrow-age sample of older individuals (n = 657 with brain volumetric data at the initial wave, n = 465 at follow-up). We used latent variable modeling to extract error-free cognitive levels and slopes. Initial levels of cognitive ability were predictive of subsequent brain tissue volume changes. Initial brain volumes were not predictive of subsequent cognitive changes. Brain volume changes, especially increases in WMH, were associated with declines in each of the cognitive abilities. All statistically significant results were modest in size (absolute r-values ranged from 0.114 to 0.334). These results build a comprehensive picture of macrostructural brain volume changes and declines in important cognitive faculties during the eighth decade of life.

  6. Designing a personal music assistant that enhances the social, cognitive, and affective experiences of people with dementia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peeters, M.M.M.; Harbers, M.; Neerincx, M.A.

    2016-01-01

    Research shows that music with a strong personal meaning can enhance the social, cognitive, and affective experiences of both people with dementia (PwD) and their social environment. We applied a human-centred design method, called situated Cognitive Engineering, to develop the conceptual design and

  7. Effects of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy on Employment Outcomes in Early Schizophrenia: Results from a 2-Year Randomized Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eack, Shaun M.; Hogarty, Gerard E.; Greenwald, Deborah P.; Hogarty, Susan S.; Keshavan, Matcheri S.

    2011-01-01

    Objective: To examine the effects of psychosocial cognitive rehabilitation on employment outcomes in a randomized controlled trial for individuals with early course schizophrenia. Method: Early course schizophrenia outpatients (N = 58) were randomly assigned to cognitive enhancement therapy (CET) or an enriched supportive therapy (EST) control and…

  8. The process of cognitive behaviour therapy for chronic fatigue syndrome: which changes in perpetuating cognitions and behaviour are related to a reduction in fatigue?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heins, M.J.; Knoop, H.; Burk, W.J.; Bleijenberg, G.

    2013-01-01

    Objective: Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) can significantly reduce fatigue in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), but little is known about the process of change taking place during CBT. Based on a recent treatment model (Wiborg et al. J Psych Res 2012), we examined how (changes in) cognitions and be

  9. Parental changes after involvement in their anxious child's cognitive behavior therapy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Esbjørn, Barbara Hoff; Sømhovd, Mikael Julius; Nielsen, Sara Kerstine;

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Specific parental behaviors and cognitions are associated with child anxiety. Studies informing us of the directionality of the associations are lacking. We investigated the effect of parental involvement in children's anxiety treatment on parental behaviors and cognitions. METHOD: Chi......-reported maternal autonomy-granting (non-involved mothers showed a greater increase). CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest that child anxiety significantly influences parental behaviors and cognitions. Child therapy may successfully change the family system.......OBJECTIVE: Specific parental behaviors and cognitions are associated with child anxiety. Studies informing us of the directionality of the associations are lacking. We investigated the effect of parental involvement in children's anxiety treatment on parental behaviors and cognitions. METHOD...

  10. Neural Correlates of Changes in a Visual Search Task due to Cognitive Training in Seniors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nele Wild-Wall

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to elucidate the underlying neural sources of near transfer after a multidomain cognitive training in older participants in a visual search task. Participants were randomly assigned to a social control, a no-contact control and a training group, receiving a 4-month paper-pencil and PC-based trainer guided cognitive intervention. All participants were tested in a before and after session with a conjunction visual search task. Performance and event-related potentials (ERPs suggest that the cognitive training improved feature processing of the stimuli which was expressed in an increased rate of target detection compared to the control groups. This was paralleled by enhanced amplitudes of the frontal P2 in the ERP and by higher activation in lingual and parahippocampal brain areas which are discussed to support visual feature processing. Enhanced N1 and N2 potentials in the ERP for nontarget stimuli after cognitive training additionally suggest improved attention and subsequent processing of arrays which were not immediately recognized as targets. Possible test repetition effects were confined to processes of stimulus categorisation as suggested by the P3b potential. The results show neurocognitive plasticity in aging after a broad cognitive training and allow pinpointing the functional loci of effects induced by cognitive training.

  11. Cognition-emotion interactions: patterns of change and implications for math problem solving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trezise, Kelly; Reeve, Robert A

    2014-01-01

    Surprisingly little is known about whether relationships between cognitive and emotional states remain stable or change over time, or how different patterns of stability and/or change in the relationships affect problem solving abilities. Nevertheless, cross-sectional studies show that anxiety/worry may reduce working memory (WM) resources, and the ability to minimize the effects anxiety/worry is higher in individuals with greater WM capacity. To investigate the patterns of stability and/or change in cognition-emotion relations over time and their implications for problem solving, 126 14-year-olds' algebraic WM and worry levels were assessed twice in a single day before completing an algebraic math problem solving test. We used latent transition analysis to identify stability/change in cognition-emotion relations, which yielded a six subgroup solution. Subgroups varied in WM capacity, worry, and stability/change relationships. Among the subgroups, we identified a high WM/low worry subgroup that remained stable over time and a high WM/high worry, and a moderate WM/low worry subgroup that changed to low WM subgroups over time. Patterns of stability/change in subgroup membership predicted algebraic test results. The stable high WM/low worry subgroup performed best and the low WM capacity-high worry "unstable across time" subgroup performed worst. The findings highlight the importance of assessing variations in cognition-emotion relationships over time (rather than assessing cognition or emotion states alone) to account for differences in problem solving abilities.

  12. Cognitive enhancing effect of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers on learning and memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V S Nade

    2015-01-01

    Conclusion: The results suggest that the cognitive enhancing effect of ACEI and ARBs may be due to inhibition of AChE or by regulation of antioxidant system or increase in formation of angiotensin IV.

  13. Views on Lifestyle Change From Caregivers of People With Cognitive Impairment in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. John Mei

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Lifestyle changes such as in physical exercise, social activity, and diet can mitigate cognitive decline and improve quality of life in caregivers and care recipients with cognitive impairment. However, caregiver perspectives on lifestyle change remain largely unexamined. This study compares perspectives among caregivers for those with dementia and those with mild cognitive impairment (MCI. Interviews were conducted with caregivers in two sites in China, and thematic similarities and differences were examined between the two groups. Caregivers from both groups identified exercise, social activity, and diet as healthy ways of life. Differences were found in approaching lifestyle change based on health of the care recipient. Caregivers for patients with dementia found more often that they had no time or possibility for change, while caregivers for individuals with MCI were more often hopeful about change.

  14. Does working memory training work? The promise and challenges of enhancing cognition by training working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, Alexandra B; Chein, Jason M

    2011-02-01

    A growing body of literature shows that one's working memory (WM) capacity can be expanded through targeted training. Given the established relationship between WM and higher cognition, these successful training studies have led to speculation that WM training may yield broad cognitive benefits. This review considers the current state of the emerging WM training literature, and details both its successes and limitations. We identify two distinct approaches to WM training, strategy training and core training, and highlight both the theoretical and practical motivations that guide each approach. Training-related increases in WM capacity have been successfully demonstrated across a wide range of subject populations, but different training techniques seem to produce differential impacts upon the broader landscape of cognitive abilities. In particular, core WM training studies seem to produce more far-reaching transfer effects, likely because they target domain-general mechanisms of WM. The results of individual studies encourage optimism regarding the value of WM training as a tool for general cognitive enhancement. However, we discuss several limitations that should be addressed before the field endorses the value of this approach.

  15. Enhancing Cognitive Development through Physics Problem Solving: A Taxonomy of Introductory Physics Problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teodorescu, Raluca; Bennhold, Cornelius; Feldman, Gerald

    2008-10-01

    As part of an ongoing project to reform the introductory algebra-based physics courses at George Washington University, we are developing a taxonomy of introductory physics problems (TIPP) that establishes a connection between the physics problems, the type of physics knowledge they involve and the cognitive processes they develop in students. This taxonomy will provide, besides an algorithm for classifying physics problems, an organized and relatively easy-to-use database of physics problems that contains the majority of already created text-based and research-based types of problems. In addition, this taxonomy will reveal the kinds of physics problems that are still lacking and that are found to be necessary to enhance students' cognitive development. For this reason, we expect it to be a valuable teaching resource for physics instructors which will enable them to select the problems used in their curricular materials based on the specifics of their students' cognition and the learning objectives they want to achieve in their class. This organization scheme will also provide a framework for creating physics-related assessments with a cognitive component.

  16. Association between binge eating disorder and changes in cognitive functioning following bariatric surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavender, Jason M; Alosco, Michael L; Spitznagel, Mary Beth; Strain, Gladys; Devlin, Michael; Cohen, Ronald; Paul, Robert; Crosby, Ross D; Mitchell, James E; Wonderlich, Stephen A; Gunstad, John

    2014-12-01

    Evidence suggests that both obesity and binge eating disorder (BED) may be associated with deficits in cognitive functioning. The purpose of this study was to examine whether a lifetime history of BED would be associated with changes in several domains of cognitive functioning (attention, executive function, language, and memory) following bariatric surgery. Participants were 68 bariatric surgery patients who completed a computerized battery of cognitive tests within 30 days prior to undergoing surgery and again at a 12-Month postoperative follow-up. Results revealed that on the whole, participants displayed improvements from baseline to follow-up in attention, executive function, and memory, even after controlling for diagnostic history of depression; no changes were observed for language. However, individuals with and without a history of BED did not differ in changes in body mass index or in the degree of improvement in cognitive functioning from baseline to follow-up. Such results suggest that a history of BED does not influence changes in cognitive functioning following bariatric surgery. Future research will be needed to further clarify the role of BED in predicting cognitive function over time.

  17. Cognitive Neuroscience Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia II: developing imaging biomarkers to enhance treatment development for schizophrenia and related disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Cameron S; Barch, Deanna M; Bullmore, Edward; Breiling, James; Buchanan, Robert W; Butler, Pamela; Cohen, Jonathan D; Geyer, Mark; Gollub, Randy; Green, Michael F; Jaeger, Judith; Krystal, John H; Moore, Holly; Nuechterlein, Keith; Robbins, Trevor; Silverstein, Steven; Smith, Edward E; Strauss, Milton; Wykes, Til

    2011-07-01

    The Cognitive Neuroscience Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia (CNTRICS) initiative, funded by an R13 from the National Institute of Mental Health, seeks to enhance translational research in treatment development for impaired cognition in schizophrenia by developing tools from cognitive neuroscience into useful measures of treatment effects on behavior and brain function. An initial series of meetings focused on the selection of a new set of tasks from cognitive neuroscience for the measurement of treatment effects on specific cognitive and neural systems. Subsequent validation and optimization studies are underway and a subset of validated measures with well-characterized psychometric properties will be generally available in 2011. This article describes results of the first meeting of the second phase of the Cognitive Neuroscience Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia, which seeks to develop imaging biomarkers and improved animal models to enhance translational research. In this meeting, we considered issues related to the use of methods such as functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, magnetoencephalography, and transcranial magnetic simulation as biomarkers for treatment development. We explored the biological nature of the signals measured by each method, their validity and reliability as measures of cognition-related neural activity, potential confounds related to drug effects on the signal of interest, and conceptual, methodological, and pragmatic issues related to their use in preclinical, first into human, and multicenter phase II and III studies. This overview article describes the background and goals of the meeting together with a summary of the major issues discussed in more detail in the accompanying articles appearing in this issue of Biological Psychiatry.

  18. Changes in cognitive function after carotid endarterectomy in older patients: comparison with younger patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Yoshihiro; Ogasawara, Kuniaki; Matsumoto, Yuuki; Kobayashi, Masakazu; Yoshida, Kenji; Kubo, Yoshitaka; Beppu, Takaaki; Murakami, Toshiyuki; Nanba, Takamasa; Ogawa, Akira

    2013-01-01

    Objective and subjective assessments of changes in cognition after carotid endarterectomy (CEA) were compared between older patients (≥76 years old) and younger patients (cognitive assessment by a neurosurgeon and the patient's next of kin, and neuropsychological testing (five parameters) before and after surgery. Of 37 older patients studied, 4 (11%), 28 (75%), and 5 (14%) patients were defined as having subjectively improved, unchanged, and impaired cognition, respectively, following surgery. Differences in test scores (postoperative test score - preoperative test score: Δ score) in all neuropsychological tests were significantly lower in the older patients than in the 213 younger patients. The Δ score was able to statistically differentiate older patients with subjectively improved, unchanged, and impaired cognition after surgery. Receiver operating characteristic analysis showed that the Δ score cut-off point for detecting subjective improvement (upper cut-off point) and impairment (lower cut-off point) in cognition after surgery in older patients was identical to the mean or the mean +0.5 standard deviation (SD) and the mean -1.5 SD or the mean -1 SD, respectively, of the control value obtained from normal subjects. The upper and lower cut-off points were lower and higher, respectively, than those in younger patients. In conclusion, although neuropsychological test scores reflect the subjective assessment of postoperative change in cognition in older patients, the optimal cut-off points for the test scores to detect subjective improvement and impairment in cognition after CEA are different in older patients compared with younger patients.

  19. Docosahexaenoic acid dietary supplementation enhances the effects of exercise on synaptic plasticity and cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, A; Ying, Z; Gomez-Pinilla, F

    2008-08-26

    Omega-3 fatty acids (i.e. docosahexaenoic acid; DHA), similar to exercise, improve cognitive function, promote neuroplasticity, and protect against neurological lesion. In this study, we investigated a possible synergistic action between DHA dietary supplementation and voluntary exercise on modulating synaptic plasticity and cognition. Rats received DHA dietary supplementation (1.25% DHA) with or without voluntary exercise for 12 days. We found that the DHA-enriched diet significantly increased spatial learning ability, and these effects were enhanced by exercise. The DHA-enriched diet increased levels of pro-brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and mature BDNF, whereas the additional application of exercise boosted the levels of both. Furthermore, the levels of the activated forms of CREB and synapsin I were incremented by the DHA-enriched diet with greater elevation by the concurrent application of exercise. While the DHA diet reduced hippocampal oxidized protein levels, a combination of a DHA diet and exercise resulted in a greater reduction rate. The levels of activated forms of hippocampal Akt and CaMKII were increased by the DHA-enriched diet, and with even greater elevation by a combination of diet and exercise. Akt and CaMKII signaling are crucial step by which BDNF exerts its action on synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. These results indicate that the DHA diet enhanced the effects of exercise on cognition and BDNF-related synaptic plasticity, a capacity that may be used to promote mental health and reduce risk of neurological disorders.

  20. Dynamic Associations of Change in Physical Activity and Change in Cognitive Function: Coordinated Analyses of Four Longitudinal Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magnus Lindwall

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study used a coordinated analyses approach to examine the association of physical activity and cognitive change in four longitudinal studies. A series of multilevel growth models with physical activity included both as a fixed (between-person and time-varying (within-person predictor of four domains of cognitive function (reasoning, memory, fluency, and semantic knowledge was used. Baseline physical activity predicted fluency, reasoning and memory in two studies. However, there was a consistent pattern of positive relationships between time-specific changes in physical activity and time-specific changes in cognition, controlling for expected linear trajectories over time, across all four studies. This pattern was most evident for the domains of reasoning and fluency.

  1. Australian university students’ coping strategies and use of pharmaceutical stimulants as cognitive enhancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charmaine eJensen

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: There are reports that some university students are using prescription stimulants for non-medical ‘pharmaceutical cognitive enhancement (PCE’ to improve alertness, focus, memory, and mood in an attempt to manage the demands of study at university. Purported demand for PCEs in academic contexts have been based on incomplete understandings of student motivations, and often based on untested assumptions about the context within which stimulants are used. They may represent attempts to cope with biopsychosocial stressors in university life by offsetting students’ inadequate coping responses, which in turn may affect their cognitive performance. This study aimed to identify (a what strategies students adopted to cope with the stress of university life and, (b to assess whether students who have used stimulants for PCE exhibit particular stress or coping patterns.Methods: We interviewed 38 university students (with and without PCE experience about their experience of managing student life, specifically their educational values, study habits and achievement, stress management, getting assistance, competing activities and responsibilities, health habits, and cognitive enhancement practices. All interview transcripts were coded into themes and analysed.Results: Our thematic analysis revealed that, generally, self-rated coping ability decreased as students’ self-rated stress level increased. Students used emotion- and problem-focused coping for the most part and adjustment-focused coping to a lesser extent. Avoidance, an emotion-focused coping strategy, was the most common, followed by problem-focused coping strategies, the use of cognition on enhancing substances, and planning and monitoring of workload. PCE users predominantly used avoidant emotion-focused coping strategies until they no longer mitigated the distress of approaching deadlines resulting in the use of prescription stimulants as a substance-based problem-focused coping

  2. Exercise improves cognitive responses to psychological stress through enhancement of epigenetic mechanisms and gene expression in the dentate gyrus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Collins

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: We have shown previously that exercise benefits stress resistance and stress coping capabilities. Furthermore, we reported recently that epigenetic changes related to gene transcription are involved in memory formation of stressful events. In view of the enhanced coping capabilities in exercised subjects we investigated epigenetic, gene expression and behavioral changes in 4-weeks voluntarily exercised rats. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Exercised and control rats coped differently when exposed to a novel environment. Whereas the control rats explored the new cage for the complete 30-min period, exercised animals only did so during the first 15 min after which they returned to sleeping or resting behavior. Both groups of animals showed similar behavioral responses in the initial forced swim session. When re-tested 24 h later however the exercised rats showed significantly more immobility behavior and less struggling and swimming. If rats were killed at 2 h after novelty or the initial swim test, i.e. at the peak of histone H3 phospho-acetylation and c-Fos induction, then the exercised rats showed a significantly higher number of dentate granule neurons expressing the histone modifications and immediate-early gene induction. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Thus, irrespective of the behavioral response in the novel cage or initial forced swim session, the impact of the event at the dentate gyrus level was greater in exercised rats than in control animals. Furthermore, in view of our concept that the neuronal response in the dentate gyrus after forced swimming is involved in memory formation of the stressful event, the observations in exercised rats of enhanced neuronal responses as well as higher immobility responses in the re-test are consistent with the reportedly improved cognitive performance in these animals. Thus, improved stress coping in exercised subjects seems to involve enhanced cognitive capabilities possibly resulting from

  3. Grasping preparation enhances orientation change detection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tjerk P Gutteling

    Full Text Available Preparing a goal directed movement often requires detailed analysis of our environment. When picking up an object, its orientation, size and relative distance are relevant parameters when preparing a successful grasp. It would therefore be beneficial if the motor system is able to influence early perception such that information processing needs for action control are met at the earliest possible stage. However, only a few studies reported (indirect evidence for action-induced visual perception improvements. We therefore aimed to provide direct evidence for a feature-specific perceptual modulation during the planning phase of a grasping action. Human subjects were instructed to either grasp or point to a bar while simultaneously performing an orientation discrimination task. The bar could slightly change its orientation during grasping preparation. By analyzing discrimination response probabilities, we found increased perceptual sensitivity to orientation changes when subjects were instructed to grasp the bar, rather than point to it. As a control experiment, the same experiment was repeated using bar luminance changes, a feature that is not relevant for either grasping or pointing. Here, no differences in visual sensitivity between grasping and pointing were found. The present results constitute first direct evidence for increased perceptual sensitivity to a visual feature that is relevant for a certain skeletomotor act during the movement preparation phase. We speculate that such action-induced perception improvements are controlled by neuronal feedback mechanisms from cortical motor planning areas to early visual cortex, similar to what was recently established for spatial perception improvements shortly before eye movements.

  4. Combining brain stimulation and video game to promote long-term transfer of learning and cognitive enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Looi, Chung Yen; Duta, Mihaela; Brem, Anna-Katharine; Huber, Stefan; Nuerk, Hans-Christoph; Cohen Kadosh, Roi

    2016-02-23

    Cognitive training offers the potential for individualised learning, prevention of cognitive decline, and rehabilitation. However, key research challenges include ecological validity (training design), transfer of learning and long-term effects. Given that cognitive training and neuromodulation affect neuroplasticity, their combination could promote greater, synergistic effects. We investigated whether combining transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) with cognitive training could further enhance cognitive performance compared to training alone, and promote transfer within a short period of time. Healthy adults received real or sham tDCS over their dorsolateral prefrontal cortices during two 30-minute mathematics training sessions involving body movements. To examine the role of training, an active control group received tDCS during a non-mathematical task. Those who received real tDCS performed significantly better in the game than the sham group, and showed transfer effects to working memory, a related but non-numerical cognitive domain. This transfer effect was absent in active and sham control groups. Furthermore, training gains were more pronounced amongst those with lower baseline cognitive abilities, suggesting the potential for reducing cognitive inequalities. All effects associated with real tDCS remained 2 months post-training. Our study demonstrates the potential benefit of this approach for long-term enhancement of human learning and cognition.

  5. INSIGHTS IN EEG VERSUS HEG AND RT-FMRI NEURO FEEDBACK TRAINING FOR COGNITION ENHANCEMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonia Plerou

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Innovative research technologies in the neurosciences have remarkably improved the perception of brain structure and function. The use of several neurofeedback training techniques is broadly used for the memory and cognition augmentation as well as for several learning difficulties and AHDD rehabilitation. Author’s objective is to review cognitive enhancement techniques with the use of brain imaging intervention methods as well to evaluate the effects of these methods in the educational process. The efficiency and limitations of neurofeedback training with the use of EEG brain imaging, HEG scanning, namely NIR and PIR method and fMRI scan including rt-fMRI brain scanning technique are also discussed. Moreover, technical and clinical details of several neurofeedback treatment approaches were also taken into consideration.

  6. White-matter changes correlate with cognitive functioning in Parkinson's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca J Theilmann

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI findings from emerging studies of cortical white-matter integrity in Parkinson’s disease (PD without dementia are inconclusive. When white-matter changes have been found, their relationship to cognitive functioning in PD has not been carefully investigated. To better characterize changes in tissue diffusivity and to understand their functional significance, the present study conducted DTI in 25 PD patients without dementia and 26 controls of similar ages. An automated tract-based DTI method was used. Fractional anisotropy (FA, mean diffusivity (MD, axial diffusivity (AD, and radial diffusivity (RD were analyzed. Neuropsychological measures of executive functioning (working memory, verbal fluency, cognitive flexibility, inhibitory control and visuospatial ability were then correlated with regions of interest that showed abnormal diffusivity in the PD group. We found widespread reductions in FA and increases in MD in the PD group relative to controls. These changes were predominantly related to an increase in RD. Increased AD in the PD group was limited to specific frontal tracks of the right hemisphere, possibly signifying more significant tissue changes. Motor-symptom severity did not correlate with FA. However, different measures of executive functioning and visuospatial ability correlated with FA in different segments of tracts, which contain fiber pathways to cortical regions that are thought to support specific cognitive processes. The findings suggest that abnormal tissue diffusivity may be sensitive to subtle cognitive changes in PD, some of which may be prognostic of future cognitive decline.

  7. Links between Leader Cognition, Power, and Change on Community College Campuses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eddy, Pamela L.

    2004-01-01

    As organizational change at community colleges becomes the norm, presidents leading these campuses play a heightened role in guiding successful initiatives. The research reported here investigated the relationship between leader cognition and power levers of two presidents as they framed change for campus members. These leaders' underlying…

  8. Adapting Choral Singing Experiences for Older Adults: The Implications of Sensory, Perceptual, and Cognitive Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yinger, Olivia Swedberg

    2014-01-01

    As people age, they naturally experience sensory, perceptual, and cognitive changes. Many of these changes necessitate adaptations in designing programs for older adults. Choral singing is an activity that has many potential benefits for older adults, yet the rehearsal environment, presentation style, and content of material presented may need to…

  9. Mood-Dependent Cognitive Change in a Man with Bipolar Disorder Who Cycles Every 24 Hours

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lam, Dominic; Mansell, Warren

    2008-01-01

    A case study of a bipolar patient whose mood changes every 24 hours is described to illustrate the changes in cognitive processing and content during different phases of bipolar disorder. The participant completed a battery of questionnaires and tasks on 4 separate occasions: twice when depressed and twice when manic. Depression tended to be…

  10. The Relationship of Future Agricultural Extension Educators' Cognitive Styles and Change Strategies for Adult Learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strong, Robert; Irani, Tracy

    2011-01-01

    The study expands reported here Extension education's knowledge regarding characteristics of potential change agents. Graduate students learning to become agricultural Extension educators were studied to determine their definition of a change agent. Participants' cognitive styles were assessed using Kirton's Adaptation-Innovation Inventory to…

  11. Transcranial Electrical Stimulation to Enhance Cognitive Performance of Healthy Minors: A Complex Governance Challenge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuijer, Jantien W.; de Jong, Irja M.; Kupper, Frank; van Atteveldt, Nienke M.

    2017-01-01

    An increasing number of healthy adolescents are consuming products that can enhance their cognitive performance in educational settings. Currently, the use of pharmaceuticals is the most widely discussed enhancement method in the literature, but new evidence suggests that other methods based on Transcranial Electrical Stimulation (tES) also have potential as cognitive enhancer. Just like pharmaceutical enhancers, the availability and education-related use of tES-devices raise a broad range of ethical, legal, and societal issues that need to be addressed by policy-makers. Few studies, however, have specifically explored these issues in relation to child wellbeing. In this narrative review with systematic search, we describe the issues for child wellbeing that could arise from the availability and education-related use of tES-based enhancers by healthy minors. We demonstrate that the issues form a complex web of uncertainties and concerns, which are mainly incited by two factors. First is the high level of factual uncertainty due to gaps in empirical evidence about the exact working mechanisms and efficacy of tES. Moreover, a lack of insight into the technique’s (long-term) effects on healthy developing brains, and uncertainties about potential cognitive trade-offs have fueled concerns about the technique’s safety and impact. The second factor that contributes to the complexity of issues is the presence of moral diversity in our society. Different opinions exist on whether a certain enhancement effect would be desirable and whether potential risks would be acceptable. These opinions depend on one’s moral perspective, and the way one interprets and weights values such as the child’s autonomy and authenticity. The challenge for proper governance resides in the design of an appropriate framework that is capable of balancing the different moral perspectives in society, while recognizing the uncertainties that still exist. We therefore argue for a responsible

  12. Investigations into mild electric foot shock stress-induced cognitive enhancement: possible role of angiotensin neuropeptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bali, Anjana; Singh, Nirmal; Jaggi, Amteshwar Singh

    2013-09-01

    This study was designed to investigate the role of angiotensin neuropeptides in mild electric foot shock stress-induced cognitive enhancement in mice. Mild stress was induced by applying mild electric foot shocks of 0.15 mA intensity for 0.5 s. The stress-induced alteration in cognition was assessed using a Morris water maze test. The animals were subjected to mild electric foot shocks 5 min before we recorded escape latency time (ELT), an index of learning, during the first 4 days of a 5-day trial in the Morris water maze. The time spent in target quadrant (TSTQ), an index of retrieval, was noted on the fifth day without prior administration of electric foot shock. The angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor lisinopril (5, 10 and 20 mg/kg), and telmisartan (1, 2 and 5 mg/kg), an angiotensin II receptor blocker, were employed to assess the role of angiotensin neuropeptides. The application of mild electric shocks significantly decreased ELT and increased TSTQ, indicating enhancement in stress-induced learning and memory. However, administration of lisinopril and telmisartan significantly attenuated the stress-induced decrease in ELT and increase in TSTQ. It may be concluded that mild electric foot shock-induced stress triggers the release of angiotensin neuropeptides that may be responsible for memory enhancement.

  13. The memory-enhancing effect of erucic acid on scopolamine-induced cognitive impairment in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Eunji; Ko, Hae Ju; Jeon, Se Jin; Lee, Sunhee; Lee, Hyung Eun; Kim, Ha Neul; Woo, Eun-Rhan; Ryu, Jong Hoon

    2016-03-01

    Erucic acid is a monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid isolated from the seed of Raphanus sativus L. that is known to normalize the accumulation of very long chain fatty acids in the brains of patients suffering from X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy. Here, we investigated whether erucic acid enhanced cognitive function or ameliorated scopolamine-induced memory impairment using the passive avoidance, Y-maze and Morris water maze tasks. Erucic acid (3mg/kg, p.o.) enhanced memory performance in normal naïve mice. In addition, erucic acid (3mg/kg, p.o.) ameliorated scopolamine-induced memory impairment, as assessed via the behavioral tasks. We then investigated the underlying mechanism of the memory-enhancing effect of erucic acid. The administration of erucic acid increased the phosphorylation levels of phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase (PI3K), protein kinase C zeta (PKCζ), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) and additional protein kinase B (Akt) in the hippocampus. These results suggest that erucic acid has an ameliorative effect in mice with scopolamine-induced memory deficits and that the effect of erucic acid is partially due to the activation of PI3K-PKCζ-ERK-CREB signaling as well as an increase in phosphorylated Akt in the hippocampus. Therefore, erucic acid may be a novel therapeutic agent for diseases associated with cognitive deficits, such as Alzheimer's disease.

  14. Concurrent Indicators of Gait Velocity and Variability Are Associated with 25-Year Cognitive Change: A Retrospective Longitudinal Investigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDonald, Stuart W. S.; Hundza, Sandra; Love, Janet A.; DeCarlo, Correne A.; Halliday, Drew W. R.; Brewster, Paul W. H.; Lukyn, Timothy V.; Camicioli, Richard; Dixon, Roger A.

    2017-01-01

    Background/Objectives: Physical function indicators, including gait velocity, stride time and step length, are linked to neural and cognitive function, morbidity and mortality. Whereas cross-sectional associations are well documented, far less is known about long-term patterns of cognitive change as related to objective indicators of mobility-related physical function. Methods: Using data from the Victoria Longitudinal Study, a long-term investigation of biological and health aspects of aging and cognition, we examined three aspects of cognition-physical function linkages in 121 older adults. First, we examined a simple marker of physical function (3 m timed-walk) as a predictor of cross-sectional differences and up to 25-year change for four indicators of cognitive function. Second, we tested associations between two markers of gait function derived from the GAITRite system (velocity and stride-time variability) and differences and change in cognition. Finally, we evaluated how increasing cognitive load during GAITRite assessment influenced the associations between gait and cognition. Results: The simple timed-walk measure, commonly used in clinical and research settings, was a minor predictor of change in cognitive function. In contrast, the objectively measured indicator of walking speed significantly moderated long-term cognitive change. Under increasing cognitive load, the moderating influence of velocity on cognitive change increased, with increasing variability in stride time also emerging as a predictor of age-related cognitive decline. Conclusion: These findings: (a) underscore the utility of gait as a proxy for biological vitality and for indexing long-term cognitive change; and (b) inform potential mechanisms underlying age-related linkages in physical and cognitive function.

  15. Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD stimulant medications as cognitive enhancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Diane Advokat

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Recent increases in ADHD diagnoses, and the escalation of stimulant prescriptions, have raised concern about diversion and abuse of stimulants, as well as the ethics of using these drugs as ‘cognitive enhancers.’ Such concern appears misplaced in the face of substantial evidence that stimulant drugs do not improve the academic performance of ADHD-diagnosed students. Moreover, numerous studies have found little or no benefit of stimulants on neuropsychological tests of ADHD-diagnosed as well as normal, individuals. This paper examines the apparent paradox: why don’t drugs that improve ‘attention,’ produce better academic outcomes in ADHD-diagnosed students? We found that stimulant drugs significantly improved impairment of episodic memory in ADHD-diagnosed undergraduate students. Nevertheless, we also found consistent academic deficits between ADHD students and their nonADHD counterparts, regardless of whether or not they used stimulant medications. We reviewed the current literature on the behavioral effects of stimulants, to try to find an explanation for these conflicting phenomena. Across a variety of behavioral tasks, stimulants have been shown to reduce emotional reactions to frustration, improve the ability to detect errors, and increase effortful behavior. However, all of these effects would presumably enhance academic performance. On the other hand, the drugs were also found to promote ‘risky behavior’ and to increase susceptibility to environmental distraction. Such negative effects, including the use of drugs to promote wakefulness for last minute study, might explain the lack of academic benefit in the ‘real world,’ despite their cognitive potential. Like many drugs, stimulants influence behavior in multiple ways, depending on the environmental contingencies. Depending on the circumstances, stimulants may, or may not, enhance cognition.

  16. Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) stimulant medications as cognitive enhancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Advokat, Claire; Scheithauer, Mindy

    2013-01-01

    Recent increases in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnoses, and the escalation of stimulant prescriptions, has raised concern about diversion and abuse of stimulants, as well as the ethics of using these drugs as "cognitive enhancers."Such concern appears misplaced in the face of substantial evidence that stimulant drugs do not improve the academic performance of ADHD-diagnosed students. Moreover, numerous studies have found little or no benefit of stimulants on neuropsychological tests of ADHD-diagnosed as well as normal, individuals. This paper examines the apparent paradox: why don't drugs that improve "attention," produce better academic outcomes in ADHD-diagnosed students? We found that stimulant drugs significantly improved impairment of episodic memory in ADHD-diagnosed undergraduate students. Nevertheless, we also found consistent academic deficits between ADHD students and their non-ADHD counterparts, regardless of whether or not they used stimulant medications. We reviewed the current literature on the behavioral effects of stimulants, to try to find an explanation for these conflicting phenomena. Across a variety of behavioral tasks, stimulants have been shown to reduce emotional reactions to frustration, improve the ability to detect errors, and increase effortful behavior. However, all of these effects would presumably enhance academic performance. On the other hand, the drugs were also found to promote "risky behavior" and to increase susceptibility to environmental distraction. Such negative effects, including the use of drugs to promote wakefulness for last minute study, might explain the lack of academic benefit in the "real world," despite their cognitive potential. Like many drugs, stimulants influence behavior in multiple ways, depending on the environmental contingencies. Depending on the circumstances, stimulants may, or may not, enhance cognition.

  17. Plausibility Judgments in Conceptual Change and Epistemic Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardi, Doug; Nussbaum, E. Michael; Sinatra, Gale M.

    2016-01-01

    Plausibility judgments rarely have been addressed empirically in conceptual change research. Recent research, however, suggests that these judgments may be pivotal to conceptual change about certain topics where a gap exists between what scientists and laypersons find plausible. Based on a philosophical and empirical foundation, this article…

  18. Globalization and cognitive enhancement: emerging social and ethical challenges for ADHD clinicians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ilina; Filipe, Angela M; Bard, Imre; Bergey, Meredith; Baker, Lauren

    2013-09-01

    Globalization of ADHD and the rise of cognitive enhancement have raised fresh concerns about the validity of ADHD diagnosis and the ethics of stimulant drug treatment. We review the literature on these two emerging phenomena, with a focus on the corresponding social, scientific and ethical debates over the universality of ADHD and the use of stimulant drug treatments in a global population of children and adolescents. Drawing on this literature, we reflect on the importance of ethically informed, ecologically sensitive clinical practices in relation to ADHD diagnosis and treatment.

  19. Cognitive-enhancing drugs in the healthy population: Fundamental drawbacks and researcher roles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsee Leng Choy

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The use of pharmacological cognitive enhancers (PCEs in the healthy population is a controversial topic with numerous and expansive repercussions. By outlining common proponent arguments on the current PCE state of affairs, the definition of normality, and the complex regulation of PCEs, this article addresses why the mainstream use of PCEs in the healthy population is still disadvantageous overall. In this respect, the influence and roles of researchers to the society are emphasized in bringing the focus back to the fundamental issues, which is crucial in deciphering its controversy and avoiding costly societal, research credibility and ethical implications.

  20. Development and effect of a cognitive enhancement gymnastics program for elderly people with dementia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Yoon-Soo; Araki, Tatsuo; Lee, Pil-Young; Choi, Jung-Hyun; Kwon, In-Seon; Kwon, Ki-Nam; Kim, Ji-Youn

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a cognitive enhancement gymnastics program for the elderly with dementia and to verify its effect. The study was conducted on 27 people with dementia being treated in a dementia day care center in Incheon city. No statistically significant differences were found in the measures Mini-Mental State Examination for Dementia Screening (MMSE-DS), Short Geriatric Depression Scale (SGDS), Seoul Activities of Daily Living (S-ADL), or rock-paper-scissors. However, the MMSE-DS and rock-paper-scissors showed improvement after 12 weeks. PMID:27656632

  1. The Human Side of Change: Towards a Pragmatic, Evolutionary Conception of Cognition and Emotion in Organizational Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Jason Wayne

    2009-01-01

    This dissertation synthesizes and analyzes an emblematic sample of three prevalent psychological approaches to organizational change and learning, giving particular attention to the conception of cognition and emotion. It also explores some of the philosophical and psychological assumptions undergirding these approaches. A web model depicting…

  2. tDCS-enhanced motor and cognitive function in neurological diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flöel, Agnes

    2014-01-15

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation tool that is now being widely used in neuroscientific and clinical research in humans. While initial studies focused on modulation of cortical excitability, the technique quickly progressed to studies on motor and cognitive functions in healthy humans and in patients with neurological diseases. In the present review we will first provide the reader with a brief background on the basic principles of tDCS. In the main part, we will outline recent studies with tDCS that aimed at enhancing behavioral outcome or disease-specific symptoms in patients suffering from mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer's disease, movement disorders, and epilepsy, or persistent deficits after stroke. The review will close with a summary statement on the present use of tDCS in the treatment of neurological disorders, and an outlook to further developments in this realm. tDCS may be an ideal tool to be administered in parallel to intensive cognitive or motor training in neurological disease, but efficacy for the areas of activities and participation still needs to be established in controlled randomized trials. Its use in reducing disease-specific symptoms like dystonia or epileptic seizures is still unclear.

  3. Cortical kynurenine pathway metabolism: a novel target for cognitive enhancement in Schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wonodi, Ikwunga; Schwarcz, Robert

    2010-03-01

    The brain concentration of kynurenic acid (KYNA), a metabolite of the kynurenine pathway of tryptophan degradation and antagonist at both the glycine coagonist site of the N-methyl-D-aspartic acid receptor (NMDAR) and the alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (alpha7nAChR), is elevated in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) of individuals with schizophrenia. This increase may be clinically relevant because hypofunction of both the NMDAR and the alpha7nAChR are implicated in the pathophysiology, and especially in the cognitive deficits associated with the disease. In rat PFC, fluctuations in endogenous KYNA levels bidirectionally modulate extracellular levels of 3 neurotransmitters closely related to cognitive function (glutamate, dopamine, and acetylcholine). Moreover, behavioral studies in rats have demonstrated a causal link between increased cortical KYNA levels and neurocognitive deficits, including impairment in spatial working memory, contextual learning, sensory gating, and prepulse inhibition of the startle reflex. In recent human postmortem studies, impairments in gene expression and activity of kynurenine pathway enzymes were found in cortical areas of individuals with schizophrenia. Additional studies have revealed an interesting association between a sequence variant in the gene of one of these enzymes, kynurenine 3-monooxygenase, and neurocognitive deficits seen in patients. The emerging, remarkable confluence of data from humans and animals suggests an opportunity for developing a rational pharmacology by targeting cortical kynurenine pathway metabolism for cognition enhancement in schizophrenia and beyond.

  4. Enhancers and Inhibitors of Teacher Change among Secondary Physical Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bechtel, Pamela A.; O'Sullivan, Mary

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore enhancers and inhibitors that impacted 4 secondary physical education teachers to make changes in their programs. An interpretivist approach was used to understand the physical educators' change process. Data were collected from document analyses, participant information sheets, interviews, discussion…

  5. Regional cingulum disruption, not gray matter atrophy, detects cognitive changes in amnestic mild cognitive impairment subtypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Yu-Ling; Chen, Ta-Fu; Shih, Yao-Chia; Chiu, Ming-Jang; Yan, Sui-Hing; Tseng, Wen-Yih Isaac

    2015-01-01

    Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), which has a high risk of progression to Alzheimer's disease (AD), can be classified into single domain (S-aMCI) and multiple domain (M-aMCI) subtypes. We investigated the integrity of regional gray matter and segments of the cingulum bundle with diffusion spectrum imaging tract-specific analysis, and their relationships to neuropsychological functioning, in 46 individuals with aMCI (S-aMCI n = 24; M-aMCI n = 22) and 36 healthy controls (HC). Results demonstrated that although both aMCI groups were impaired on all memory measures relative to HCs, the M-aMCI group demonstrated worse performance on paired association memory and on selective executive function relative to the S-aMCI group. The two aMCI groups did not show significant atrophy in regional gray matter indices as compared to the HC group, but the M-aMCI group showed significant disruption in white matter of the left anterior and inferior cingulum bundles relative to the S-aMCI and HC groups. Furthermore, disruption in the inferior cingulum bundles was significantly associated with executive function and attention/processing speed in all aMCI participants above and beyond the contribution of bilateral hippocampal volumes. Overall, these results indicate that the degeneration of cingulum fibers did not appear to arise from degeneration of the corresponding cerebral cortex. It also suggests relatively greater sensitivity of a white matter biomarker and comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation over gray matter biomarkers in early detection of AD.

  6. Graphic gambling warnings: how they affect emotions, cognitive responses and attitude change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Yaromir; Chebat, Jean-Charles; Borges, Adilson

    2013-09-01

    The present study focuses on the effects of graphic warnings related to excessive gambling. It is based upon a theoretical model derived from both the Protection Motivation Theory (PMT) and the Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM). We focus on video lottery terminal (VLT), one of the most hazardous format in the gaming industry. Our cohort consisted of 103 actual gamblers who reported previous gambling activity on VLT's on a regular basis. We assess the effectiveness of graphic warnings vs. text-only warnings and the effectiveness of two major arguments (i.e., family vs. financial disruption). A 2 × 2 factorial design was used to test the direct and combined effects of two variables (i.e., warning content and presence vs. absence of a graphic). It was found that the presence of a graphic enhances both cognitive appraisal and fear, and has positive effects on the Depth of Information Processing. In addition, graphic content combined with family disruptions is more effective for changing attitudes and complying with the warning than other combinations of the manipulated variables. It is proposed that ELM and PMT complement each other to explain the effects of warnings. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

  7. Dilemmas in the Analysis of Technological Change. A Cognitive Approach to Understand Innovation and Change in the Water Sector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dino Borri

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we argue for the need to apply a cognitive approach to understand deep dynamics and determinants of technological evolutions. After examining main contributions from innovation studies to the conceptualization of innovation and change in complex socio-technical environments, we highlight the contribution coming from the application of the cognitive approach to evolutionary studies on technologies and we introduce the concept of technological memory as an interpretative tool to understand those changes. We discuss our hypothesis with reference to several observations carried out in different local contexts – Mexico, India and Italy – in relation to technological change in the water sector. In those cases deliberate attempts to substitute traditional technologies with modern ones led to interesting trajectories of change ranging from the collapse of old technologies to the development of multifaceted hybridization patterns.

  8. Imipramine treatment improves cognitive outcome associated with enhanced hippocampal neurogenesis after traumatic brain injury in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xiaodi; Tong, Jing; Zhang, Jun; Farahvar, Arash; Wang, Ernest; Yang, Jiankai; Samadani, Uzma; Smith, Douglas H; Huang, Jason H

    2011-06-01

    Previous animal and human studies have demonstrated that chronic treatment with several different antidepressants can stimulate neurogenesis, neural remodeling, and synaptic plasticity in the normal hippocampus. Imipramine is a commonly used tricyclic antidepressant (TCA). We employed a controlled cortical impact (CCI) mouse model of traumatic brain injury (TBI) to assess the effect of imipramine on neurogenesis and cognitive and motor function recovery after TBI. Mice were given daily imipramine injections for either 2 or 4 weeks after injury. Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) was administered 3-7 days post-brain injury to label the cells that proliferated as a result of the injury. We assessed the effects of imipramine on post-traumatic motor function using a beam-walk test and an assessment of cognitive function: the novel object recognition test (NOR). Histological analyses were performed at 2 and 4 weeks after CCI. Brain-injured mice treated with imipramine showed significantly improved cognitive function compared to a saline-treated group (pimipramine-treated and saline-treated mice. Histological examination revealed increased preservation of proliferation of Ki-67- and BrdU-positive cells in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) at 2 and 4 weeks after TBI. Immunofluorescence double-labeling with BrdU and neuron-specific markers at 4 weeks after injury showed that most progenitors became neurons in the DG and astrocytes in the hilus. Notably, treatment with imipramine increased preservation of the total number of newly-generated neurons. Our findings provide direct evidence that imipramine treatment contributes to cognitive improvement after TBI, perhaps by enhanced hippocampal neurogenesis.

  9. The heritability of level and rate-of-change in cognitive functioning in Danish twins aged 70 years and older.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGue, Matt; Christensen, Kaare

    2002-01-01

    To investigate heritable influences on overall level and rate-of-change in cognitive ability, biometric growth models were fit to cognitive data from nearly 1000 Danish twins age 70 years and older. Twins are participants in the ongoing Longitudinal Study of Aging Danish Twins, a cohort-sequential study of twins assessed every 2 years for up to four waves. Cognitive ability was assessed by five brief cognitive tasks: a fluency measure, forward and backward digit span, and immediate and delayed list recall. Model-fitting results indicated that although the overall level of cognitive functioning was highly heritable (h(2) = .76, 95% confidence interval of .68 to .82), the rate of linear change was not (h(2) = .06, 95% confidence interval of .00 to .57). These findings suggest that the search for specific genes might reasonably focus on average level of cognitive performance, whereas specific environmental influences might account for cognitive change.

  10. Cognitive processes as mediators of the relation between mindfulness and change in social anxiety symptoms following cognitive behavioral treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Jessica R; Price, Matthew; Schmertz, Stefan K; Johnson, Suzanne B; Masuda, Akihiko; Calamaras, Martha; Anderson, Page L

    2014-05-01

    The present study examined whether pretreatment mindfulness exerts an indirect effect on outcomes following cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). Cognitive processes of probability and cost bias (i.e., overestimations of the likelihood that negative social events will occur, and that these events will have negative consequences when they do occur) were explored as potential mediators of the relation between mindfulness and social anxiety symptom change. People with higher levels of mindfulness may be better able to benefit from treatments that reduce biases because mindfulness may aid in regulation of attention. Sixty-seven individuals with a primary diagnosis of social phobia identifying public speaking as their greatest fear received eight sessions of one of two types of exposure-based CBT delivered according to treatment manuals. Participants completed self-report measures of mindfulness, probability bias, cost bias, and social anxiety symptoms. Mediation hypotheses were assessed by a bootstrapped regression using treatment outcome data. Pretreatment mindfulness was not related to change in social anxiety symptoms from pre- to posttreatment. However, mindfulness had an indirect effect on treatment outcome via its association with probability bias, but not cost bias, at midtreatment. These findings were consistent across three metrics of social anxiety symptoms. Mindfulness may play a role in response to CBT among individuals with social phobia through its relation with probability bias--even when the treatment does not target mindfulness.

  11. Changes in anxiety and cognition due to reproductive experience: a review of data from rodent and human mothers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macbeth, Abbe H; Luine, Victoria N

    2010-03-01

    Rodent research suggests that pregnancy, motherhood and attendant offspring care affect changes in neural function and behaviors that are not directly maternal in nature, but involve cognition, affect, and responses to stress. Thus, female rats having had one pregnancy and bout of rearing (primiparous), or multiple pregnancies and bouts of rearing (multiparous), generally show greater resilience to stress, decreased anxiety, and better memory abilities than female rats that have never experienced motherhood (virgin or nulliparous). Moreover, some studies show that these neural changes remain long after the last pregnancy, persisting even into old age. In the current review, we will begin by discussing these behavioral and neural changes in rodents and provide some information concerning their possible mechanisms. Then we will review data from studies examining anxiety and cognition in postpartum human mothers. While this data is less conclusive than that from non-human animals, it appears that reproductive experience may confer some beneficial changes to human mothers in terms of lowering the anxiety/stress response and enhancing certain aspects of memory.

  12. Noisy galvanic vestibular stimulation enhances spatial memory in cognitive impairment-induced by intracerebroventricular-streptozotocin administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adel Ghahraman, Mansoureh; Zahmatkesh, Maryam; Pourbakht, Akram; Seifi, Behjat; Jalaie, Shohreh; Adeli, Soheila; Niknami, Zohreh

    2016-04-01

    There are several anatomical connections between vestibular system and brain areas construct spatial memory. Since subliminal noisy galvanic vestibular stimulation (GVS) has been demonstrated to enhance some types of memory, we speculated that application of noisy GVS may improve spatial memory in a rat model of intracerebroventricular streptozotocin (ICV-STZ)-induced cognitive impairment. Moreover, we attempted to determine the effect of repeated exposure to GVS on spatial memory performance. The spatial memory was assessed using Morris water maze test. The groups received 1 (ICV-STZ/GVS-I) or 5 (ICV-STZ/GVS-II) sessions, each lasting 30 min, of low amplitude noisy GVS, or no GVS at all (Control, ICV-saline, ICV-STZ/noGVS). Hippocampal morphological changes investigated with cresyl violet staining and the immediate early gene product c-Fos, as a neuronal activity marker, was measured. Hippocampal c-Fos positive cells increased in both GVS stimulated groups. We observed significantly improved spatial performance only in ICV-STZ/GVS-II group. Histological evaluation showed normal density in ICV-STZ/GVS-II group whereas degeneration observed in ICV-STZ/GVS-I group similar to ICV-STZ/noGVS. The results showed the improvement of memory impairment after repeated exposure to GVS. This effect may be due in part to frequent activation of the vestibular neurons and the hippocampal regions connected to them. Our current study suggests the potential role of GVS as a practical method to combat cognitive decline induced by sporadic Alzheimer disease.

  13. Differentiation and Integration: Guiding Principles for Analyzing Cognitive Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegler, Robert S.; Chen, Zhe

    2008-01-01

    Differentiation and integration played large roles within classic developmental theories but have been relegated to obscurity within contemporary theories. However, they may have a useful role to play in modern theories as well, if conceptualized as guiding principles for analyzing change rather than as real-time mechanisms. In the present study,…

  14. Cognitive enhancers versus addictive psychostimulants: The good and bad side of dopamine on prefrontal cortical circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisagno, Veronica; González, Betina; Urbano, Francisco J

    2016-07-01

    In this review we describe how highly addictive psychostimulants such as cocaine and methamphetamine actions might underlie hypoexcitabilty in frontal cortical areas observed in clinical and preclinical models of psychostimulant abuse. We discuss new mechanisms that describe how increments on synaptic dopamine release are linked to reduce calcium influx in both pre and postsynaptic compartments on medial PFC networks, therefore modulating synaptic integration and information. Sustained DA neuromodulation by addictive psychostimulants can "lock" frontal cortical networks in deficient states. On the other hand, other psychostimulants such as modafinil and methylphenidate are considered pharmacological neuroenhancement agents that are popular among healthy people seeking neuroenhancement. More clinical and preclinical research is needed to further clarify mechanisms of actions and physiological effects of cognitive enhancers which show an opposite pattern compared to chronic effect of addictive psychostimulants: they appear to increase cortical excitability. In conclusion, studies summarized here suggest that there is frontal cortex hypoactivity and deficient inhibitory control in drug-addicted individuals. Thus, additional research on physiological effects of cognitive enhancers like modafinil and methylphenidate seems necessary in order to expand current knowledge on mechanisms behind their therapeutic role in the treatment of addiction and other neuropsychiatric disorders.

  15. Lycopersicon esculentum Extract Enhances Cognitive Function and Hippocampal Neurogenesis in Aged Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Jung-Soo; Han, Mira; Shin, Hee Soon; Shon, Dong-Hwa; Lee, Soon-Tae; Shin, Chang-Yup; Lee, Yuri; Lee, Dong Hun; Chung, Jin Ho

    2016-01-01

    A decrease in adult neurogenesis is associated with the aging process, and this decrease is closely related to memory impairment. Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) is a fruit with diverse bioactive nutrients that is consumed worldwide. In this study, we investigated the cognition-enhancing effect of tomato ethanolic extracts (TEE) in aged mice. Six weeks of oral TEE administration in 12-month-old aged mice significantly increased their exploration time of novel objects when compared to vehicle-treated mice. The TEE supplement increased doublecortin (DCX)-positive cells and postsynaptic density-95 (PSD95) expression in mice hippocampus. Moreover, we found an increased expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and subsequently-activated extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK)/cAMP response element binding (CREB) signaling pathway in the TEE-supplemented mice hippocampus. In conclusion, the oral administration of TEE exhibits a cognition-enhancing effect, and the putative underlying mechanism is the induction of BDNF signaling-mediated proliferation and synapse formation in the hippocampus. These findings indicate that TEE could be a candidate for treatment of age-related memory impairment and neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:27792185

  16. Smart drugs for cognitive enhancement: ethical and pragmatic considerations in the era of cosmetic neurology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cakic, V

    2009-10-01

    Reports in the popular press suggest that smart drugs or "nootropics" such as methylphenidate, modafinil and piracetam are increasingly being used by the healthy to augment cognitive ability. Although current nootropics offer only modest improvements in cognitive performance, it appears likely that more effective compounds will be developed in the future and that their off-label use will increase. One sphere in which the use of these drugs may be commonplace is by healthy students within academia. This article reviews the ethical and pragmatic implications of nootropic use in academia by drawing parallels with issues relevant to the drugs in sport debate. It is often argued that performance-enhancing drugs should be prohibited because they create an uneven playing field. However, this appears dubious given that "unfair" advantages are already ubiquitous and generally tolerated by society. There are concerns that widespread use will indirectly coerce non-users also to employ nootropics in order to remain competitive. However, to restrict the autonomy of all people for fear that it may influence the actions of some is untenable. The use of potentially harmful drugs for the purposes of enhancement rather than treatment is often seen as unjustified, and libertarian approaches generally champion the rights of the individual in deciding if these risks are acceptable. Finally, whether the prohibition of nootropics can be effectively enforced is doubtful. As nootropics use becomes widespread among students in the future, discussion of this issue will become more pressing in the years to come.

  17. Cognition-emotion interactions: Patterns of change and implications for math problem solving

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly eTrezise

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Surprisingly little is known about whether relationships between cognitive and emotional states remain stable or change over time, or how different patterns of stability and/or change in the relationships affect problem solving abilities. Nevertheless, cross-sectional studies show that anxiety/worry may reduce working memory resources, and the ability to minimize the effects anxiety/worry is higher in individuals with greater WM capacity. To investigate the patterns of stability and/or change in cognition-emotion relations over time and their implications for problem solving, 126 14-year-olds’ algebraic WM and worry levels were assessed twice in a single day before completing an algebraic math problem solving test. We used latent transition analysis to identify stability/change in cognition-emotion relations, which yielded a six subgroup solution. Subgroups varied in WM capacity, worry, and stability/change relationships. Among the subgroups, we identified a high WM/low worry subgroup that remained stable over time and a high WM/high worry, and a moderate WM/low worry subgroup that changed to low WM subgroups over time. Patterns of stability/change in subgroup membership predicted algebraic test results. The stable high WM/low worry subgroup performed best and the low WM capacity-high worry unstable across time subgroup performed worst. The findings highlight the importance of assessing variations in cognition-emotion relationships over time (rather than assessing cognition or emotion states alone to account for differences in problem solving abilities.

  18. Program of arithmetic improvement by means of cognitive enhancement: an intervention in children with special educational needs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deaño, Manuel Deaño; Alfonso, Sonia; Das, Jagannath Prasad

    2015-03-01

    This study reports the cognitive and arithmetic improvement of a mathematical model based on the program PASS Remedial Program (PREP), which aims to improve specific cognitive processes underlying academic skills such as arithmetic. For this purpose, a group of 20 students from the last four grades of Primary Education was divided into two groups. One group (n=10) received training in the program and the other served as control. Students were assessed at pre and post intervention in the PASS cognitive processes (planning, attention, simultaneous and successive processing), general level of intelligence, and arithmetic performance in calculus and solving problems. Performance of children from the experimental group was significantly higher than that of the control group in cognitive process and arithmetic. This joint enhancement of cognitive and arithmetic processes was a result of the operationalization of training that promotes the encoding task, attention and planning, and learning by induction, mediation and verbalization. The implications of this are discussed.

  19. Cognitive profile and brain morphological changes in obstructive sleep apnea

    OpenAIRE

    Torelli, Federico; Moscufo, Nicola; Garreffa, Girolamo; Placidi, Fabio; Romigi, Andrea; Zannino, Silvana; Bozzali, Marco; Fasano, Fabrizio; Giulietti, Giovanni; Djonlagic, Ina; Malhotra, Atul; Marciani, Maria Grazia; Guttmann, Charles RG

    2010-01-01

    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is accompanied by neurocognitive impairment, likely mediated by injury to various brain regions. We evaluated brain morphological changes in patients with OSA and their relationship to neuropsychological and oximetric data. Sixteen patients affected by moderate-severe OSA (age: 55.8±6.7 years, 13 males) and fourteen control subjects (age: 57.6±5.1 years, 9 males) underwent 3.0 Tesla brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and neuropsychological testing evaluating ...

  20. Performance enhancement in the workplace: why and when healthyindividuals should disclose their reliance on pharmaceutical cognitive enhancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirko D. Garasic

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The use of pharmaceuticals cognitive enhancers (PCE have been stirring growing interest, not only in the scientific domain but also in the popular media, and has probably had some increase recently in academic, professional and military quarters, although such increase is very difficult to assess. In line with an attitude of general acceptance towards – at least some of – the practical implementations of Human Enhancement (HE, this phenomenon is deemed as a normal procedure aimed at improving the performance of an individual as well as the overall standards of an organization. Although the vast majority of countries have some kind of restrictions to reduce the wide non-medical usage of PCE, these can be overcome quite easily. Our main objective in this theoretical paper is to underline the tension between the bio-liberal motto the use of PCE is a freely eligible personal choice, and the practical context in which its secret or concealed implementation might lead to potential dysfunctional or dangerous interpersonal or social consequences.

  1. Patterns of Change in Cognitive Function over Six Months in Adults with Chronic Heart Failure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Riegel

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Few investigators have studied cognition over time in adults with heart failure (HF. A battery of neuropsychological tests was administered to 279 adults with chronic systolic or diastolic HF at baseline, three and six months. Growth mixture modeling (GMM was used to model the measure anticipated to be most sensitive, the digit symbol substitution task (DSST. We describe how and why the DSST patterns change over time. Other measures of cognition were examined to identify consistency with the DSST patterns. The sample was predominantly male (63.2%, Caucasian (62.7%, mean age 62 years. The best fit GMM revealed two trajectories of DSST scores: Average processing speed group (40.5% and Below Average processing speed (59.9%. Neither group changed significantly over the six month study. Other measures of cognition were consistent with the DSST patterns. Factors significantly associated with increased odds of being in the Below Average processing speed group included older age, male gender, Non-Caucasian race, less education, higher ejection fraction, high comorbid burden, excessive daytime sleepiness, and higher BMI. As some of the factors related to cognitive impairment are modifiable, research is needed to identify interventions to preserve and improve cognition in these patients.

  2. Cognitive Change in Elderly Populations: "Normal" Aging, Senile Dementia and Depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bach, Paul J.

    Cognitive change in the elderly can be due to several etiological factors which are empirically difficult to separate and clinically problematic to differentiate. Normal aging is accompanied by behavioral slowing. The slowing down of psycho-motor processes results in a lowered intelligence quotient, but cannot be taken as unequivocal evidence for…

  3. Somatic chronic diseases and 6-year change in cognitive functioning among older persons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Comijs, H.; Kriegsman, D.M.W.; Dik, M.G.; Deeg, D.J.H.; Jonker, C.; Stalman, W.A.B.

    2009-01-01

    The influence of seven highly prevalent somatic chronic diseases on changes in cognitive functioning is investigated in older persons in a prospective design covering a 6-year follow-up period. The data were collected as part of the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA). The associations between

  4. Evidence for Acute Electrophysiological and Cognitive Changes Following Routine Soccer Heading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas G. Di Virgilio

    2016-11-01

    Discussion: Sub-concussive head impacts routine in soccer heading are associated with immediate, measurable electrophysiological and cognitive impairments. Although these changes in brain function were transient, these effects may signal direct consequences of routine soccer heading on (long-term brain health which requires further study.

  5. A Cognitive Therapy Approach to Increasing Father Involvement by Changing Restrictive Masculine Schemas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahalik, James R.; Morrison, Jay A.

    2006-01-01

    Cognitive therapists may be able to help fathers increase their involvement with their children by identifying and changing restrictive masculine schemas that interfere with men's parenting roles. In this paper, we (a) discuss the development of restrictive masculine schemas, (b) explain how these schemas may affect men's involvement in fathering…

  6. Cognitive deficits and morphological cerebral changes in a random sample of social drinkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergman, H

    1985-01-01

    A random sample of 200 men and 200 women taken from the general population as well as subsamples of 31 male and 17 female excessive social drinkers were investigated with neuropsychological tests and computed tomography of the brain. Relatively high alcohol intake per drinking occasion did not give evidence of cognitive deficits or morphological cerebral changes. However, in males, mild cognitive deficits and morphological cerebral changes as a result of high recent alcohol intake, particularly during the 24-hr period prior to the investigation, were observed. When excluding acute effects of recent alcohol intake, mild cognitive deficits but not morphological cerebral changes that are apparently due to long-term excessive social drinking were observed in males. In females there was no association between the drinking variables and cognitive deficits or morphological cerebral changes, probably due to their less advanced drinking habits. It is suggested that future risk evaluations and estimations of safe alcohol intake should take into consideration the potential risk for brain damage due to excessive social drinking. However, it is premature to make any definite statements about safe alcohol intake and the risk for brain damage in social drinkers from the general population.

  7. Functional Brain Network Changes Associated with Maintenance of Cognitive Function in Multiple Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santosh A Helekar

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available In multiple sclerosis (MS functional changes in connectivity due to cortical reorganization could lead to cognitive impairment (CI, or reflect a re-adjustment to reduce the clinical effects of widespread tissue damage. Such alterations in connectivity could result in changes in neural activation as assayed by executive function tasks. We examined cognitive function in MS patients with mild to moderate cognitive impairment and age-matched controls. We evaluated brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI during the successful performance of the Wisconsin-card sorting (WCS task by MS patients, showing compensatory maintenance of normal function, as measured by response latency and error rate. To assess changes in functional connectivity throughout the brain, we performed a global functional brain network analysis by computing voxel by voxel correlations on the fMRI time series data and carrying out a hierarchical cluster analysis. We found that during the WCS task there is a significant reduction in the number of smaller size brain functional networks, and a change in the brain areas representing the nodes of these networks in MS patients compared to age-matched controls. There is also a concomitant increase in the strength of functional connections between brain loci separated at intermediate scale distances in these patients. These functional alterations might reflect compensatory neuroplastic reorganization underlying maintenance of relatively normal cognitive function in the face of white matter lesions and cortical atrophy produced by MS.

  8. Cognitive Abilities Explaining Age-Related Changes in Time Perception of Short and Long Durations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zelanti, Pierre S.; Droit-Volet, Sylvie

    2011-01-01

    The current study investigated how the development of cognitive abilities explains the age-related changes in temporal judgment over short and long duration ranges from 0.5 to 30 s. Children (5- and 9-year-olds) as well as adults were given a temporal bisection task with four different duration ranges: a duration range shorter than 1 s, two…

  9. White matter changes in 80 mild cognitive impairment patients using magnetic resonance imaging

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Hyun Cho; Jee-Hyun Kwon; Sun-Young Kim

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Many studies have suggested that one possible etiology of mild cognitive impairment is small vessel cerebrovascular disease, which is associated with small subcortical infarcts and white matter abnormalities. These white matter changes have been detected as white matter hyperintensity (WMH) using magnetic resonance imaging. WMH may be associated with frontal lobe dysfunction. OBJECTIVE: To examine white matter changes in mild cognitive impairment patients of different subtypes, and to evaluate the correlation between white matter changes and neuropsychological characteristics, demographic information, vascular risk factors, and mild cognitive impairment subtypes. DESIGN, TIME AND SETTING: The neurophysiological, comparison study was performed at the Department of Neurology Memory Clinic, Ulsan University Hospital, South Korea, between March 2007 and March 2008.PARTICIPANTS: Out of a total of 83 subjects with clinically diagnosed mild cognitive impairment at the out-patient clinic, 3 subjects with severe WMH were excluded. A total of 80 subjects were included in this study. No patients suffered from cognitive impairment induced by neurological diseases, mental disorders, or somatic diseases. In accordance with magnetic resonance imaging results, the patients were assigned to two subtypes: 56 subjects without WMH and 24 subjects with WMH. METHODS: All patients were subjected to a standard neuropsychological battery using the Korean version of the Mini-Mental State Examination, Clinical Dementia Rating, and comprehensive Seoul Neuropsychological Screening Battery. The Clinical Dementia Rating reflected general cognitive function of patients. Results from the Seoul Neuropsychological Screening Battery reflected attention, language function, visuospatial function, verbal memory, nonverbal memory, long-term memory, and frontal/executive function. Magnetic resonance imaging was used to map changes in the brain. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The association between

  10. Regional brain shrinkage and change in cognitive performance over two years: The bidirectional influences of the brain and cognitive reserve factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Persson, Ninni; Ghisletta, Paolo; Dahle, Cheryl L; Bender, Andrew R; Yang, Yiqin; Yuan, Peng; Daugherty, Ana M; Raz, Naftali

    2016-02-01

    We examined relationships between regional brain shrinkage and changes in cognitive performance, while taking into account the influence of chronological age, vascular risk, Apolipoprotein E variant and socioeconomic status. Regional brain volumes and cognitive performance were assessed in 167 healthy adults (age 19-79 at baseline), 90 of whom returned for the follow-up after two years. Brain volumes were measured in six regions of interest (ROIs): lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC), prefrontal white matter (PFw), hippocampus (Hc), parahippocampal gyrus (PhG), cerebellar hemispheres (CbH), and primary visual cortex (VC), and cognitive performance was evaluated in three domains: episodic memory (EM), fluid intelligence (Gf), and vocabulary (V). Average volume loss was observed in Hc, PhG and CbH, but reliable individual differences were noted in all examined ROIs. Average positive change was observed in EM and V performance but not in Gf scores, yet only the last evidenced individual differences in change. We observed reciprocal influences among neuroanatomical and cognitive variables. Larger brain volumes at baseline predicted greater individual gains in Gf, but differences in LPFC volume change were in part explained by baseline level of cognitive performance. In one region (PFw), individual change in volume was coupled with change in Gf. Larger initial brain volumes did not predict slower shrinkage. The results underscore the complex role of brain maintenance and cognitive reserve in adult development.

  11. The heritability of level and rate-of-change in cognitive functioning in Danish twins aged 70 years and older

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McGue, Matt; Christensen, Kaare

    2002-01-01

    To investigate heritable influences on overall level and rate-of-change in cognitive ability, biometric growth models were fit to cognitive data from nearly 1000 Danish twins age 70 years and older. Twins are participants in the ongoing Longitudinal Study of Aging Danish Twins, a cohort...... was highly heritable (h(2) = .76, 95% confidence interval of .68 to .82), the rate of linear change was not (h(2) = .06, 95% confidence interval of .00 to .57). These findings suggest that the search for specific genes might reasonably focus on average level of cognitive performance, whereas specific...... environmental influences might account for cognitive change....

  12. Cognitive Function, Progression of Age-related Behavioral Changes, Biomarkers, and Survival in Dogs More Than 8 Years Old

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schütt, T.; Berendt, M.; Toft, Nils

    2015-01-01

    patted, difficulty finding dropped food and anxiety. Thirty-three percent of dogs with a normal cognitive status progressed to MCI and 22% classified as MCI progressed to CCD during the study period. For 6 dogs diagnosed with CCD, signs of cognitive dysfunction increased with time. A diagnosis of CCD did......BackgroundCanine cognitive dysfunction (CCD) is an age-dependent neurodegenerative condition dominated by changes in behavioral patterns. Cohort studies investigating cognitive status in dogs are lacking. ObjectivesTo investigate cognitive function, progression of age-related behavioral changes......, survival, and possible biomarkers of CCD in aged dogs. AnimalsFifty-one dogs >8 years old; 21 with no cognitive deficits, 17 with mild cognitive impairments (MCI) and 13 with CCD. MethodsLongitudinal study. Recruitment period of 12 months and an observational period of 24 months including a baseline and 3...

  13. Clemastine Enhances Myelination in the Prefrontal Cortex and Rescues Behavioral Changes in Socially Isolated Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jia; Dupree, Jeffrey L; Gacias, Mar; Frawley, Rebecca; Sikder, Tamjeed; Naik, Payal; Casaccia, Patrizia

    2016-01-20

    Altered myelin structure and oligodendrocyte function have been shown to correlate with cognitive and motor dysfunction and deficits in social behavior. We and others have previously demonstrated that social isolation in mice induced behavioral, transcriptional, and ultrastructural changes in oligodendrocytes of the prefrontal cortex (PFC). However, whether enhancing myelination and oligodendrocyte differentiation could be beneficial in reversing such changes remains unexplored. To test this hypothesis, we orally administered clemastine, an antimuscarinic compound that has been shown to enhance oligodendrocyte differentiation and myelination in vitro, for 2 weeks in adult mice following social isolation. Clemastine successfully reversed social avoidance behavior in mice undergoing prolonged social isolation. Impaired myelination was rescued by oral clemastine treatment, and was associated with enhanced oligodendrocyte progenitor differentiation and epigenetic changes. Clemastine induced higher levels of repressive histone methylation (H3K9me3), a marker for heterochromatin, in oligodendrocytes, but not neurons, of the PFC. This was consistent with the capability of clemastine in elevating H3K9 histone methyltransferases activity in cultured primary mouse oligodendrocytes, an effect that could be antagonized by cotreatment with muscarine. Our data suggest that promoting adult myelination is a potential strategy for reversing depressive-like social behavior. Significance statement: Oligodendrocyte development and myelination are highly dynamic processes influenced by experience and neuronal activity. However, whether enhancing myelination and oligodendrocyte differentiation is beneficial to treat depressive-like behavior has been unexplored. Mice undergoing prolonged social isolation display impaired myelination in the prefrontal cortex. Clemastine, a Food and Drug Administration-approved antimuscarinic compound that has been shown to enhance myelination under

  14. Changes in FKBP5 expression and memory functions during cognitive-behavioral therapy in posttraumatic stress disorder: a preliminary study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szabó, Csilla; Kelemen, Oguz; Kéri, Szabolcs

    2014-05-21

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized by hyperarousal, flashbacks, avoidance, and memory dysfunctions. Although psychotherapy improves the clinical symptoms, its effect on memory has not been explored. In addition, there is no information about gene expression changes related to hippocampal functions. We assessed PTSD patients (n=20) using the Wechsler Memory Scale-Revised (WAIS-R) and a paired associates learning (PAL) test, as well as changes in blood FK506 binding protein (FKBP5) mRNA expression before and after cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Results revealed that before CBT PTSD patients were impaired on WAIS-R delayed recall, attention/concentration, and PAL compared with trauma-exposed control subjects (n=20). These memory dysfunctions showed a significant improvement after CBT. Better performance on the PAL test correlated with enhanced blood FKBP5 mRNA expression. These results suggest that elevated FKBP5 expression during CBT is related to improved associative memory linked to the hippocampal formation.

  15. Jump, Hop, or Skip: Modeling Practice Effects in Studies of Determinants of Cognitive Change in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vivot, Alexandre; Power, Melinda C; Glymour, M Maria; Mayeda, Elizabeth R; Benitez, Andreana; Spiro, Avron; Manly, Jennifer J; Proust-Lima, Cécile; Dufouil, Carole; Gross, Alden L

    2016-02-15

    Improvements in cognitive test scores upon repeated assessment due to practice effects (PEs) are well documented, but there is no empirical evidence on whether alternative specifications of PEs result in different estimated associations between exposure and rate of cognitive change. If alternative PE specifications produce different estimates of association between an exposure and rate of cognitive change, this would be a challenge for nearly all longitudinal research on determinants of cognitive aging. Using data from 3 cohort studies-the Three-City Study-Dijon (Dijon, France, 1999-2010), the Normative Aging Study (Greater Boston, Massachusetts, 1993-2007), and the Washington Heights-Inwood Community Aging Project (New York, New York, 1999-2012)-for 2 exposures (diabetes and depression) and 3 cognitive outcomes, we compared results from longitudinal models using alternative PE specifications: no PEs; use of an indicator for the first cognitive visit; number of prior testing occasions; and square root of the number of prior testing occasions. Alternative specifications led to large differences in the estimated rates of cognitive change but minimal differences in estimated associations of exposure with cognitive level or change. Based on model fit, using an indicator for the first visit was often (but not always) the preferred model. PE specification can lead to substantial differences in estimated rates of cognitive change, but in these diverse examples and study samples it did not substantively affect estimated associations of risk factors with change.

  16. Cognition-emotion interactions: Patterns of change and implications for math problem solving

    OpenAIRE

    Kelly eTrezise; Robert eReeve

    2014-01-01

    Surprisingly little is known about whether relationships between cognitive and emotional states remain stable or change over time, or how different patterns of stability and/or change in the relationships affect problem solving abilities. Nevertheless, cross-sectional studies show that anxiety/worry may reduce working memory resources, and the ability to minimize the effects anxiety/worry is higher in individuals with greater WM capacity. To investigate the patterns of stability and/or chan...

  17. Cognition-emotion interactions: patterns of change and implications for math problem solving

    OpenAIRE

    Trezise, Kelly; Reeve, Robert A.

    2014-01-01

    Surprisingly little is known about whether relationships between cognitive and emotional states remain stable or change over time, or how different patterns of stability and/or change in the relationships affect problem solving abilities. Nevertheless, cross-sectional studies show that anxiety/worry may reduce working memory (WM) resources, and the ability to minimize the effects anxiety/worry is higher in individuals with greater WM capacity. To investigate the patterns of stability and/or c...

  18. The Use of Prescription Drugs, Recreational Drugs, and "Soft Enhancers" for Cognitive Enhancement among Swiss Secondary School Students.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evangelia Liakoni

    Full Text Available The use of prescription or recreational drugs for cognitive enhancement (CE is prevalent among students. However, the prevalence of CE among Swiss school students is unknown. We therefore performed a cross-sectional online survey including ≥ 16-year-old students from bridge-year schools (10th grade, vocational schools, and upper secondary schools (10th-12th grade in the Canton of Zurich to investigate the prevalence of and motives for the use of prescription drugs, recreational drugs, and/or freely available soft enhancers for CE. A total of 1,139 students were included. Of these, 54.5% reported the use of prescription drugs (9.2%, recreational drugs including alcohol (6.2%, or soft enhancers (51.3% explicitly for CE at least once in their lives. The last-year and last-month prevalence for CE considering all substances was 45.5% and 39.5%, respectively. Soft enhancers were the substances that were most commonly used (ever, last-year, and last-month, respectively, including energy drinks (33.3%, 28.4%, and 24.6%, coffee (29.8%, 25.1%, and 21.9%, and tobacco (12.6%, 9.3%, and 8.3%. CE with methylphenidate was less prevalent (4.0%, 2.8%, and 2.0%. However, the use of prescription drugs, alcohol, or illegal drugs for CE was reported by 13.3% of the participants. The most common motives for use were to stay awake and improve concentration. CE was more prevalent among students who reported higher levels of stress or performance pressure and students with psychiatric disorders. In conclusion, half of the school students had used a substance at least once in their lives to improve school performance. Soft enhancers were most commonly used. Prevalence rates were similar to those reported by Swiss university students, indicating that the use of prescription or recreational drugs for CE already occurs before starting higher education. Performance pressure, stress, and psychiatric disorders may be associated with CE.

  19. Loss in Executive Functioning Best Explains Changes in Pain Responsiveness in Patients with Dementia-Related Cognitive Decline

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kunz, Miriam; Mylius, Veit; Schepelmann, Karsten; Lautenbacher, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    There is ample evidence that dementia changes the processing of pain. However, it is not known whether this change in pain processing is related to the general decline in cognitive functioning or whether it may be related to specific domains of cognitive functioning. With the present study we tried

  20. Thinking Copenhagen: The Cognitive Dimension of Climate Change Policy Making In Brazil and the United States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark S. Langevin

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available This article explores the cognitive dimension of climate change policy making in Brazil and the United States as both countries prepare for the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change or COP15 in Copenhagen. The comparative policy analysis is framed by Putnam (1988 and informed by Bazerman (2009, but adapted to explore the cognitive expressions of policymaking through investigation of public opinion, newspaper coverage, and policymaker statements. The analysis reveals key differences in the ways that Brazilian and U.S. citizens, journalists, and policymakers understand global warming and climate change and think through the policy alternatives for addressing this global challenge through national policy and international negotiations. Brazil’s cognitive dimension provides its negotiators with a wide range of strategic positions, allowing this country to play the role of dealmaker. The U.S. administration arrives at Copenhagen with a narrow win-set, limited by the discordant and divisive cognitive expressions that surround policymaking. These differences limit bilateral cooperation and complicate the COP15 negotiations.

  1. Predictors of change in life skills in schizophrenia after cognitive remediation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurtz, Matthew M; Seltzer, James C; Fujimoto, Marco; Shagan, Dana S; Wexler, Bruce E

    2009-02-01

    Few studies have investigated predictors of response to cognitive remediation interventions in patients with schizophrenia. Predictor studies to date have selected treatment outcome measures that were either part of the remediation intervention itself or closely linked to the intervention with few studies investigating factors that predict generalization to measures of everyday life-skills as an index of treatment-related improvement. In the current study we investigated the relationship between four measures of neurocognitive function, crystallized verbal ability, auditory sustained attention and working memory, verbal learning and memory, and problem-solving, two measures of symptoms, total positive and negative symptoms, and the process variables of treatment intensity and duration, to change on a performance-based measure of everyday life-skills after a year of computer-assisted cognitive remediation offered as part of intensive outpatient rehabilitation treatment. Thirty-six patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder were studied. Results of a linear regression model revealed that auditory attention and working memory predicted a significant amount of the variance in change in performance-based measures of everyday life skills after cognitive remediation, even when variance for all other neurocognitive variables in the model was controlled. Stepwise regression revealed that auditory attention and working memory predicted change in everyday life-skills across the trial even when baseline life-skill scores, symptoms and treatment process variables were controlled. These findings emphasize the importance of sustained auditory attention and working memory for benefiting from extended programs of cognitive remediation.

  2. Cyclooxygenase I and II inhibitors distinctly enhance hippocampal- and cortex-dependent cognitive functions in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Syed, Huma; Ikram, Muhammad Faisal; Yaqinuddin, Ahmed; Ahmed, Touqeer

    2015-11-01

    Cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes are expressed in the brain; however, their role in hippocampus-dependent and cortex-dependent cognitive functions remains to be fully elucidated. The aim of the present study was to comparatively investigate the effects of piroxicam, a selective COX-I inhibitor, and celecoxib, a selective COX‑II inhibitor, on cognitive functions in an AlCl3‑induced neurotoxicity mouse model to understand the specific role of each COX enzyme in the hippocampus and cortex. The AlCl3 (250 mg/kg) was administered to the mice in drinking water and the drugs were administered in feed for 30 days. Assessments of memory, including a Morris water maze, social behavior and nesting behavior were performed in control and treated mice. The RNA expression of the COX enzymes were analyzed using reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis. An ex‑vivo 2,2‑Diphenyl‑1‑picrylhydrazyl assay was performed in the hippocampus and cortex. Following 30 days of treatment with thedrugs, the mice in the celecoxib‑ and piroxicam‑treated groups exhibited enhanced learning (6.84 ± 0.76 and 9.20 ± 1.08, respectively), compared with the AlCl3‑induced neurotoxicity group (21.14 ± 0.76) on the fifth day of the Morris water maze test. Celecoxib treatment improved social affiliation in the AlCl3‑induced neurotoxicity group, the results of which were superior to piroxicam. Piroxicam led to better improvement in nesting score in the AlCl3‑induced neurotoxicity group. Both drugs decreased the expression levels of COX‑I and COX‑II in the hippocampus and cortex, and rescued oxidative stress levels. These findings suggested that each drug distinctly affected cognitive functions, highlighting the distinctive roles of COX-I and COX-II in learning and memory.

  3. Hypericum perforatum as a cognitive enhancer in rodents: A meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-Eliezer, Daniel; Yechiam, Eldad

    2016-10-20

    Considered an antidepressant and anti-anxiety agent, Hypericum perforatum affects multiple neurotransmitters in a non-competitive synergistic manner, and may have nootropic potential. We quantitatively reviewed the pre-clinical literature to examine if there is a cognitive-enhancing effect of H. perforatum in healthy rodents. Additionally, within these studies, we compared the effects observed in intact rodents versus those whose performance has been impaired, mostly through stress manipulations. The meta-analysis incorporated studies that examined the effect of H. perforatum versus placebo on memory indices of task performance. All analyses were based on weighting different studies according to their inverse variance. Thirteen independent studies (published 2000-2014) involving 20 experimental comparisons met our inclusion criteria. The results showed a large positive effect of H. perforatum on cognitive performance for intact, healthy rodents (d = 1.11), though a larger effect emerged for stress-impaired rodents (d = 3.10 for restraint stress). The positive effect on intact rodents was observed in tasks assessing reference memory as well as working memory, and was not moderated by the type of memory or motivation (appetitive versus aversive). Thus, while primarily considered as a medication for depression, H. perforatum shows considerable nootropic potential in rodents.

  4. Emotional, Cognitive and Self-Enhancement Processes in Aggressive Behavior After Interpersonal Rejection and Exclusion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Rajchert

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between exclusion or rejection and aggression is already well documented, but there is still a debate about the mechanisms that underlie this effect. In two studies we focused on the propensity to react aggressively (readiness for aggression on the bases of emotional, cognitive or self-enhancement (personality-immanent processes. In both studies we first measured readiness for aggression and then ego-depleted participants. Next, in Study 1 we excluded participants (n = 96 using an online ball throwing game and measured displaced aggressive behavior - intensity and duration of an unpleasant noise administrated to a stranger. In Study 2 participants (n = 140 were rejected by a peer on the basis of an interview that they gave and then could retaliate by reducing peer's chance for getting a job. The results show that exclusion effect on displaced aggression was moderated by cognitive readiness for aggression, while rejection effect on retaliatory aggression was shaped by emotional and personality-immanent readiness for aggression as well as ego-depletion. The results were discussed in light of the strength model of self-control by Baumeister, Vohs, and Tice (2007.

  5. Can cognitive psychological research on reasoning enhance the discussion around moral judgments?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialek, Michal; Terbeck, Sylvia

    2016-08-01

    In this article we will demonstrate how cognitive psychological research on reasoning and decision making could enhance discussions and theories of moral judgments. In the first part, we will present recent dual-process models of moral judgments and describe selected studies which support these approaches. However, we will also present data that contradict the model predictions, suggesting that approaches to moral judgment might be more complex. In the second part, we will show how cognitive psychological research on reasoning might be helpful in understanding moral judgments. Specifically, we will highlight approaches addressing the interaction between intuition and reflection. Our data suggest that a sequential model of engaging in deliberation might have to be revised. Therefore, we will present an approach based on Signal Detection Theory and on intuitive conflict detection. We predict that individuals arrive at the moral decisions by comparing potential action outcomes (e.g., harm caused and utilitarian gain) simultaneously. The response criterion can be influenced by intuitive processes, such as heuristic moral value processing, or considerations of harm caused.

  6. ERP-pupil size correlations reveal how bilingualism enhances cognitive flexibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuipers, Jan-Rouke; Thierry, Guillaume

    2013-01-01

    A bilingual upbringing has been shown to enhance executive control, but the neural mechanisms underpinning such effect are essentially unknown. Here, we investigated whether monolingual and bilingual toddlers differ in semantic processing efficiency and their allocation of attention to expected and unexpected visual stimuli. We simultaneously recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs) and pupil size in monolingual and bilingual toddlers presented with (spoken) word-picture pairs. Although ERP effects elicited by semantic relatedness were indistinguishable between the two children groups, pictures unrelated to the preceding word evoked greater pupil dilation than related pictures in bilinguals, but not in monolinguals. Furthermore, increasing pupil dilation to unrelated pictures was associated with decreasing N400 amplitude in bilinguals, whereas the monolingual toddlers showed the opposite association. Hence, attention to unexpected stimuli seems to hamper semantic integration in monolinguals, but to facilitate semantic integration in bilinguals, suggesting that bilingual toddlers are more tolerant to variation in word-referent mappings. Given the link between pupil dilation and norepinephrine-driven cognitive efficiency, correlations between ERP amplitude and concurrent pupil dilation provide new insights into the neural bases of the bilingual cognitive advantage.

  7. Cultivating lived-body consciousness: Enhancing cognition and emotion through outdoor learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thorburn Malcolm

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Through using school-based outdoor learning as the research context, the paper analyses the connections between bodily experiences and the embodied mind. Recent theorizing in outdoor learning, in reflecting phenomenology and Deweyian influences, has teased out how the relationships between the self, others and nature (environment can be extended to include embodied experiences. This would, it is argued, add something extra to either the intrinsic pursuit of enjoying practical experiences or the instrumental quest for subject knowledge gains via cognitive- informed analytical cycles of action and reflection. While generally sympathetic to this critique, we consider there is a cognitive and emotional need for embodied experiences to demonstrate that they can be suitably contemplative as well. Through drawing upon Tiberius (2008 naturalist-informed theorizing, the paper reviews the part bodily experiences in outdoor learning can play in cultivating stable values and in developing reasoning practices that provide insights into how personal responsibility can be exercised in relation to how we live. Through referencing the Scottish policy context, the paper exemplifies how learning outdoors can flourish on the basis of a joint body-mind focus; where pupils review their relations with others and nature, as well as valuing times when they are absorbed in experiences which fully engage their personal interests, skills and capacities. To enhance the prospects of these learning gains occurring we provide a self-check set of questions for teachers to review to as part of appraisal of learning and teaching outdoors

  8. Hypericum perforatum as a cognitive enhancer in rodents: A meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-Eliezer, Daniel; Yechiam, Eldad

    2016-01-01

    Considered an antidepressant and anti-anxiety agent, Hypericum perforatum affects multiple neurotransmitters in a non-competitive synergistic manner, and may have nootropic potential. We quantitatively reviewed the pre-clinical literature to examine if there is a cognitive-enhancing effect of H. perforatum in healthy rodents. Additionally, within these studies, we compared the effects observed in intact rodents versus those whose performance has been impaired, mostly through stress manipulations. The meta-analysis incorporated studies that examined the effect of H. perforatum versus placebo on memory indices of task performance. All analyses were based on weighting different studies according to their inverse variance. Thirteen independent studies (published 2000–2014) involving 20 experimental comparisons met our inclusion criteria. The results showed a large positive effect of H. perforatum on cognitive performance for intact, healthy rodents (d = 1.11), though a larger effect emerged for stress-impaired rodents (d = 3.10 for restraint stress). The positive effect on intact rodents was observed in tasks assessing reference memory as well as working memory, and was not moderated by the type of memory or motivation (appetitive versus aversive). Thus, while primarily considered as a medication for depression, H. perforatum shows considerable nootropic potential in rodents. PMID:27762349

  9. Quantitative change of meta-cognitive activities of students effected by problem-solving teaching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miščević Gordana

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on Fleivel’s theoretical framework, the subject of this paper is the study of changes in frequency of meta-cognitive activities affected by a two-month implementation of problem solving teaching in the subject of natural studies. The sample was made up of ten-year-old students. The instrument used was adapted to the student age; they were asked to state the frequency of meta-cognitive activities which they believe they applied before, during and after problem solving. The presence of meta-cognitive activities was following up in the phase of planning, monitoring and evaluation. The results show that problem solving teaching contributes to a larger presence of meta-cognitive activities in the process of planning compared to traditional teaching. In order to have a more comprehensive identification of potential meta-cognitive activities subsequent research should be directed at the use of not only this and similar instruments but also "thinking aloud" protocol. .

  10. Lift enhancement by dynamically changing wingspan in forward flapping flight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shizhao; Zhang, Xing; He, Guowei; Liu, Tianshu

    2014-06-01

    Dynamically stretching and retracting wingspan has been widely observed in the flight of birds and bats, and its effects on the aerodynamic performance particularly lift generation are intriguing. The rectangular flat-plate flapping wing with a sinusoidally stretching and retracting wingspan is proposed as a simple model for biologically inspired dynamic morphing wings. Numerical simulations of the low-Reynolds-number flows around the flapping morphing wing are conducted in a parametric space by using the immersed boundary method. It is found that the instantaneous and time-averaged lift coefficients of the wing can be significantly enhanced by dynamically changing wingspan in a flapping cycle. The lift enhancement is caused by both changing the lifting surface area and manipulating the flow structures responsible to the vortex lift generation. The physical mechanisms behind the lift enhancement are explored by examining the three-dimensional flow structures around the flapping wing.

  11. Lift Enhancement by Dynamically Changing Wingspan in Forward Flapping Flight

    CERN Document Server

    Wang, Shizhao; He, Guowei; Liu, Tianshu

    2013-01-01

    Stretching and retracting wingspan has been widely observed in the flight of birds and bats, and its effects on the aerodynamic performance particularly lift generation are intriguing. The rectangular flat-plate flapping wing with a sinusoidally stretching and retracting wingspan is proposed as a simple model of biologically-inspired dynamic morphing wings. Direct numerical simulations of the low-Reynolds-number flows around the flapping morphing wing in a parametric space are conducted by using immersed boundary method. It is found that the instantaneous and time-averaged lift coefficients of the wing can be significantly enhanced by dynamically changing wingspan in a flapping cycle. The lift enhancement is caused not only by changing the lifting surface area, but also manipulating the flow structures that are responsible to the generation of the vortex lift. The physical mechanisms behind the lift enhancement are explored by examining the three-dimensional flow structures around the flapping wing.

  12. Enhancing Fine Motor Skills of Wards with Special Needs Using Cluster Model of Cognition

    CERN Document Server

    Nair, T R Gopalakrishnan; Bukkambudhi, Ananda

    2010-01-01

    Technology offers great potential to overcome physical barriers of human race. This paper presents the methods of enhanced learning applicable to children having special needs using better human-computer interaction. The Audio-Visual (AV) effects that the graphic tools or animations help in achieving better learning, understanding, remembering and performance from such students. The 3L-R Cluster Program Model enable them to look into pictures and animated objects while listening to the related audio. It also motivates them to do the FMS development activities like drawing, coloring, tracing etc., certain types of games in the clustered model will help the children to improve concentration, thinking, reasoning, cognitive skills and the eye-to hand co-ordination. Here we introduced a novel cluster model along with the methodology described which provides an ample exposure to the effectiveness of the training. Classify the students with similar problems or disability and the associated curriculum of modified tea...

  13. Trajectories of care: spouses coping with changes related to mild cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberto, Karen A; McCann, Brandy Renee; Blieszner, Rosemary

    2013-01-01

    Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) refers to non-normative changes in memory and cognition. While researchers are beginning to address the social consequences of MCI, no investigations have tracked how married couples respond to MCI over time as symptoms stabilize or become more severe. Guided by life course and symbolic interactionist tenets, we examined how 40 older couples in the United States adjusted to daily life after one partner was diagnosed with MCI and how their marital roles and relationship changed over a three- to four-year period. Data were collected from 2004 through 2010. All couples experienced an initial period of transition in coping with MCI where they made adjustments in their daily lives and interactions. Following this adjustment period, four trajectories of care emerged depending on the extent of the older adult's decline and the spouse's response. We conclude that changes associated with MCI affect role identity and have consequences for spousal relationships.

  14. The effect of erythropoietin on cognition in affective disorders - Associations with baseline deficits and change in subjective cognitive complaints

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ott, Caroline Vintergaard; Vinberg, Maj; Kessing, Lars V

    2016-01-01

    impairment predicted treatment-efficacy. Pearson correlations were used to assess associations between objective and subjective cognition, quality of life and socio-occupational capacity. EPO improved speed of complex cognitive processing across affective disorders at weeks 9 and 14 (p≤0.05). In EPO......-efficacy and (III) if cognitive improvement correlates with better subjective cognitive function, quality of life and socio-occupational capacity. Patients with unipolar or bipolar disorder were randomized to eight weekly EPO (N=40) or saline (N=39) infusions. Cognition, mood, quality of life and socio...... improvement correlated with reduced cognitive complaints but not with quality of life or socio-occupational function. As the analyses were performed post-hoc, findings are only hypothesis-generating. In conclusion, pro-cognitive effects of EPO occurred across affective disorders. Neuropsychological screening...

  15. The rationale for consuming cognitive enhancement drugs in university students and teachers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Sattler

    Full Text Available Cognitive enhancement (CE is the pharmaceutical augmentation of mental abilities (e.g., learning or memory without medical necessity. This topic has recently attracted widespread attention in scientific and social circles. However, knowledge regarding the mechanisms that underlie the decision to use CE medication is limited. To analyze these decisions, we used data from two online surveys of randomly sampled university teachers (N = 1,406 and students (N = 3,486. Each respondent evaluated one randomly selected vignette with regard to a hypothetical CE drug. We experimentally varied the characteristics of the drugs among vignettes and distributed them among respondents. In addition, the respondent's internalization of social norms with respect to CE drug use was measured. Our results revealed that students were more willing to enhance cognitive performance via drugs than university teachers, although the overall willingness was low. The probability of side effects and their strength reduced the willingness to use CE drugs among students and university teachers, whereas higher likelihoods and magnitudes of CE increased this propensity. In addition, the internalized norm against CE drug use influenced decision making: Higher internalization decreased the willingness to use such medications. Students' internalized norms more strongly affected CE abstinence compared with those of university teachers. Furthermore, internalized norms negatively interacted with the instrumental incentives for taking CE medication. This internalization limited the influence of and deliberation on instrumental incentives. This study is the first to provide empirical evidence regarding the importance of social norms and their influence on rational decision making with regard to CE. We identified previously undiscovered decision-making patterns concerning CE. Thus, this study provides insight into the motivators and inhibitors of CE drug use. These findings have

  16. Maladaptive cognitions predict changes in problematic gaming in highly-engaged adults: A 12-month longitudinal study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrest, Cameron J; King, Daniel L; Delfabbro, Paul H

    2017-02-01

    Understanding the role of maladaptive gaming-related cognitions may assist in screening and interventions for problematic gaming, including Internet gaming disorder (IGD). Cognitive-behavioural interventions that target specific cognitions related to gaming may be more effective than more general approaches that focus only on preoccupation with games. Although past research has identified cross-sectional associations between maladaptive cognitions and problematic gaming, it is less clear whether these cognitions can predict future changes in problematic gaming behaviour. The present study employed an 18-item measure of gaming cognition, assessing perfectionism, cognitive salience, regret, and behavioural salience, to investigate potential changes in problematic gaming over a 12-month period. The sample included 465 Australian adults (84% male, Mage=26.2years). It was found that individuals who became problematic gamers over 12months had higher baseline scores on perfectionism (d=1.20), cognitive salience (d=0.74) and regret (d=0.69) than those who remained non-problematic gamers. Problematic gamers who became non-problematic gamers had lower baseline perfectionism scores (d=0.62) than those who remained problematic gamers. Cognitive change accounted for an additional 28% of variance in problematic gaming scores beyond gender, age, and frequency of gaming. These findings suggest that maladaptive gaming-related cognitions could be screened in clinical trials to aid in case formulation and inform decisions on needed interventions to deliver optimal client outcomes.

  17. Does transcranial direct current stimulation enhance cognitive and motor functions in the ageing brain? A systematic review and meta- analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summers, Jeffery J; Kang, Nyeonju; Cauraugh, James H

    2016-01-01

    The use of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to enhance cognitive and motor functions has enjoyed a massive increase in popularity. Modifying neuroplasticity via non-invasive cortical stimulation has enormous potential to slow or even reverse declines in functions associated with ageing. The current meta-analysis evaluated the effects of tDCS on cognitive and motor performance in healthy older adults. Of the 81 studies identified, 25 qualified for inclusion. A random effects model meta-analysis revealed a significant overall standardized mean difference equal to 0.53 (SE=0.09; medium heterogeneity: I(2)=57.08%; and high fail-safe: N=448). Five analyses on moderator variables indicated significant tDCS beneficial effects: (a) on both cognitive and motor task performances, (b) across a wide-range of cognitive tasks, (c) on specific brain areas, (d) stimulation offline (before) or online (during) the cognitive and motor tasks. Although the meta-analysis revealed robust support for enhancing both cognitive and motor performance, we outline a number of caveats on the use of tDCS.

  18. The association between social resources and cognitive change in older adults: evidence from the Charlotte County Healthy Aging Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Tiffany F; Andel, Ross; Small, Brent J; Borenstein, Amy R; Mortimer, James A

    2008-07-01

    We examined associations between multiple aspects of social resources and 5-year change in performance on different domains of cognitive function. Results indicated that lower satisfaction with support was associated with decline in episodic memory performance over 5 years. We also found significant interactions between age and social networks of family and friends and satisfaction with support for the separate cognitive domains. The results suggest that social resources may be differentially important for cognitive change but that different cognitive domains respond in a similar pattern to social resources.

  19. Pills or push-ups? Effectiveness and public perception of pharmacological and non-pharmacological cognitive enhancement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucius eCaviola

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We review work on the effectiveness of different forms of cognitive enhancement, both pharmacological and non-pharmacological. We consider caffeine, methylphenidate, and modafinil for pharmacological cognitive enhancement (PCE and computer training, physical exercise, and sleep for non-pharmacological cognitive enhancement (NPCE. We find that all of the techniques described can produce significant beneficial effects on cognitive performance. However, effect sizes are moderate, and consistently dependent on individual and situational factors as well as the cognitive domain in question. Although meta-analyses allowing a quantitative comparison of effectiveness across techniques are lacking to date, we can conclude that PCE is not more effective than NPCE. We discuss the physiological reasons for this limited effectiveness.We then propose that even though their actual effectiveness seems similar, in the general public PCE is perceived as fundamentally different from NPCE, in terms of effectiveness, but also in terms of acceptability. We illustrate the potential consequences such a misperception of PCE can have.

  20. Changes in neural mechanisms of cognitive control during the transition from late adolescence to young adulthood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veroude, Kim; Jolles, Jelle; Croiset, Gerda; Krabbendam, Lydia

    2013-07-01

    The transition from late adolescence to young adulthood is marked by anatomical maturation of various brain regions. In parallel, defining life changes take place, such as entrance into college. Up till now research has not focused on functional brain differences during this particular developmental stage. The current cross-sectional fMRI study investigates age differences in cognitive control by comparing late adolescents, 18-19 years old, with young adults, 23-25 years old. Seventy-four male and female medical students carried out a combined cognitive and emotional Stroop task. Overall, lateral frontoparietal and medial parietal activation was observed during cognitive interference resolution. Young adults showed stronger activation in the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, left inferior frontal gyrus, left middle temporal gyrus and middle cingulate, compared to late adolescents. During emotional interference resolution, the left precentral and postcentral gyrus were involved across age and sex. The dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and precuneus were activated more in young adults than in late adolescents. No sex-related differences were found in this homogeneous sample. The results suggest that the neural bases of cognitive control continue to change between late adolescence and young adulthood.

  1. Cognitive change trajectories in virally suppressed HIV-infected individuals indicate high prevalence of disease activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gott, Chloe; Gates, Thomas; Dermody, Nadene; Brew, Bruce J.

    2017-01-01

    Background The longitudinal rate and profile of cognitive decline in persons with stable, treated, and virally suppressed HIV infection is not established. To address this question, the current study quantifies the rate of cognitive decline in a cohort of virally suppressed HIV+ persons using clinically relevant definitions of decline, and determine cognitive trajectories taking into account historical and baseline HAND status. Methods Ninety-six HIV+ (clinically stable and virally undetectable) and 44 demographically comparable HIV- participants underwent standard neuropsychological testing at baseline and 18-months follow-up. We described clinically relevant cognitive trajectories based on standard definitions of historical and baseline HAND status and cognitive decline. Historical, moderate to severe HAND was formally diagnosed at the start of the cART era in 15/96 participants based on clinical neurological and neuropsychological assessment. The same standard of care has been applied to all participants at St. Vincent’s Hospital Infectious Disease Department for the duration of their HIV infection (median of 20 years). Results Relative to HIV- controls (4.5%), 14% of HIV+ participants declined (p = .11), they also scored significantly lower on the global change score (p = .03), processing speed (p = .02), and mental flexibility/inhibition (p = .02) domains. Having HAND at baseline significantly predicted cognitive decline at follow up (p = .005). We determined seven clinically relevant cognitive trajectories taking into account whether participant has a history of HAND prior to study entry (yes/no); their results on the baseline assessment (baseline impairment: yes/no) and their results on the 18-month follow up (decline or stable) which in order of prevalence were: 1) No HAND history, no baseline impairment, 18-month follow-up stable (39%), 2) No HAND history, baseline impairment, 18-month follow-up stable (35%), 3) History of HAND; baseline impairment, 18

  2. Towards quantification of blood-flow changes during cognitive task activation using perfusion-based fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mildner, Toralf; Zysset, Stefan; Trampel, Robert; Driesel, Wolfgang; Möller, Harald E

    2005-10-01

    Multi-slice perfusion-based functional magnetic resonance imaging (p-fMRI) is demonstrated with a color-word Stroop task as an established cognitive paradigm. Continuous arterial spin labeling (CASL) of the blood in the left common carotid artery was applied for all repetitions of the functional run in a quasi-continuous fashion, i.e., it was interrupted only during image acquisition. For comparison, blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) contrast was detected using conventional gradient-recalled echo (GE) echo planar imaging (EPI). Positive activations in BOLD imaging appeared in p-fMRI as negative signal changes corresponding to an enhanced transport of inverted water spins into the region of interest, i.e., increased cerebral blood flow (CBF). Regional differences between the localization of activations and the sensitivity of p-fMRI and BOLD-fMRI were observed as, for example, in the inferior frontal sulcus and in the intraparietal sulcus. Quantification of CBF changes during cognitive task activation was performed on a multi-subject basis and yielded CBF increases of the order of 20-30%.

  3. Physical activity and enhanced fitness to improve cognitive function in older people without known cognitive impairment, A Cochrane Review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Angevaren, Maaike; Aufdemkampe, Geert; Verhaar, H.J.J.; Aleman, A.; Vanhees, L.E.M.J.

    2008-01-01

    Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2008, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD005381. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD005381.pub2. Background: Physical activity is beneficial for healthy ageing. It may also help maintain good cognitive function in older age. Aerobic activity improves cardiovascular fitness, but it is

  4. No cognitive-enhancing effect of GLP-1 receptor agonism in antipsychotic-treated, obese patients with schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ishøy, P L; Fagerlund, B; Broberg, B V

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Schizophrenia is associated with profound cognitive and psychosocial impairments. Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1RAs) are used for diabetes and obesity treatment, and animal studies have indicated cognitive-enhancing effects. In this investigator-initiated, double......-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial, we tested non-metabolic effects of exenatide once-weekly (Bydureon™) in obese, antipsychotic-treated patients with schizohrenia spectrum disorder. METHOD: Before and after 3 months of exenatide (N = 20) or placebo (N = 20) treatment, patients were assessed...... of this first clinical trial exploring non-metabolic effects of a long-acting GLP-1RA in patients with schizophrenia could reflect a general problem of translating cognitive-enhancing effects of GLP-1RAs from animals to humans or be explained by factors specifically related to schizophrenia spectrum patients...

  5. Exercise-induced noradrenergic activation enhances memory consolidation in both normal aging and patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Segal, Sabrina K; Cotman, Carl W; Cahill, Lawrence F

    2012-01-01

    Post-trial pharmacological activation of the noradrenergic system can facilitate memory consolidation. Because exercise activates the locus coeruleus and increases brain norepinephrine release, we hypothesized that post-trial exercise could function as a natural stimulus to enhance memory consolidation. We investigated this in amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) and cognitively normal elderly individuals by examining the effects of an acute bout of post-learning, aerobic exercise (6 minutes at 70% VO2 max on a stationary bicycle) on memory for some emotional images. Exercise significantly elevated endogenous norepinephrine (measured via the biomarker, salivary alpha-amylase) in both aMCI patients and controls. Additionally, exercise retrogradely enhanced memory in both aMCI patients and controls. Acute exercise that activates the noradrenergic system may serve as a beneficial, natural, and practical therapeutic intervention for cognitive decline in the aging population.

  6. Effectiveness of enhanced cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT-E) for eating disorders : study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Jong, Martie; Korrelboom, Kees; van der Meer, Iris; Deen, Mathijs; Hoek, Hans W.; Spinhoven, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Background: While eating disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS) is the most common eating disorder (ED) diagnosis in routine clinical practice, no specific treatment methods for this diagnosis have yet been developed and studied. Enhanced cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT-E) has been described and

  7. Enhanced primary and secondary performance through cognitive relaying and leveraging primary feedback

    KAUST Repository

    Hamza, Doha R.

    2014-06-01

    We consider a spectrum-sharing system, where the primary terminal operates in a time-slotted fashion and is active only when it has a packet to send. The secondary terminal uses spectrum sensing results and the primary automatic repeat request (ARQ) feedback to access the channel probabilistically. To enhance the primary\\'s system performance, the secondary user (SU) acts as a relay for the primary user (PU) in the event of transmission failure on the direct link of the latter. Closed-form expressions for the primary and secondary throughputs are obtained for the described scheme. The optimal medium access probabilities are then obtained by maximizing the secondary throughput subject to constraints that guarantee the stability of the considered queues, a minimum primary throughput, and a maximum primary queueing delay. The results clearly indicate the benefits of cognitive relaying in enhancing the throughput performance for both the PU and SU. Furthermore, by guaranteeing minimum rate and maximum delay requirements, our scheme is shown to provide a definitive notion of protection for the licensed users of the network. © 2013 IEEE.

  8. Using web-based training to enhance perceptual-cognitive skills in complex dynamic offside events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Put, Koen; Wagemans, Johan; Spitz, Jochim; Williams, A Mark; Helsen, Werner F

    2016-01-01

    In association football, the difficulty in making offside decisions depends on both perceptual and cognitive processes. Therefore, the objectives of the present study were to enhance the decision-making skills of assistant referees by further developing their ability to (1) time slice the incoming information flow into series of isolated time frames during an ongoing offside situation and (2) use this information to mentally read off the spatial positions of the key-role players. Training (n = 10) and control groups (n = 10) were exposed to a pre- and post-test, consisting of an offside decision-making and frame recognition test. In the latter, assistant referees were asked to indicate which of five photos best represented the spatial position of the defender and attacker at the moment of the pass. Only the training group received 12 web-based offside training sessions. First, the training group improved in mentally freezing, holding and scanning the mental picture of the offside situation in short-term memory from pre- to post-test, as evidenced by an increased recognition accuracy. Second, the improvement in recognition accuracy resulted in enhanced performance on the offside decision-making task. The benefits of web-based training are highlighted.

  9. A Multidimensional View of Resistance to Organizational Change: Exploring Cognitive, Emotional, and Intentional Responses to Planned Change across Perceived Change Leadership Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szabla, David B.

    2007-01-01

    In this survey research study, the researcher employed a causal-comparative, or ex post facto, design to explore the relationship between how union employees of a U.S. county government perceived implementation of a new electronic performance appraisal process and how they responded to the planned organizational change along cognitive, emotional,…

  10. Changes in brain activation in breast cancer patients depend on cognitive domain and treatment type

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menning, Sanne; de Ruiter, Michiel B.; Veltman, Dick J.; Boogerd, Willem; Oldenburg, Hester S. A.; Reneman, Liesbeth

    2017-01-01

    Background Cognitive problems in breast cancer patients are common after systemic treatment, particularly chemotherapy. An increasing number of fMRI studies show altered brain activation in breast cancer patients after treatment, suggestive of neurotoxicity. Previous prospective fMRI studies administered a single cognitive task. The current study employed two task paradigms to evaluate whether treatment-induced changes depend on the probed cognitive domain. Methods Participants were breast cancer patients scheduled to receive systemic treatment (anthracycline-based chemotherapy +/- endocrine treatment, n = 28), or no systemic treatment (n = 24) and no-cancer controls (n = 31). Assessment took place before adjuvant treatment and six months after chemotherapy, or at similar intervals. Blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) activation and performance were measured during an executive functioning task and an episodic memory task. Group-by-time interactions were analyzed using a flexible factorial design. Results Task performance did not differ between patient groups and did not change over time. Breast cancer patients who received systemic treatment, however, showed increased parietal activation compared to baseline with increasing executive functioning task load compared to breast cancer patients who did not receive systemic treatment. This hyperactivation was accompanied by worse physical functioning, higher levels of fatigue and more cognitive complaints. In contrast, in breast cancer patients who did not receive systemic treatment, parietal activation normalized over time compared to the other two groups. Conclusions Parietal hyperactivation after systemic treatment in the context of stable levels of executive task performance is compatible with a compensatory processing account of hyperactivation or maintain adequate performance levels. This over-recruitment of brain regions depends on the probed cognitive domain and may represent a response to decreased neural

  11. Choline alphoscerate (alpha-glyceryl-phosphoryl-choline) an old choline- containing phospholipid with a still interesting profile as cognition enhancing agent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traini, Enea; Bramanti, Vincenzo; Amenta, Francesco

    2013-12-01

    Cholinergic precursors have represented the first approach to counter cognitive impairment occurring in adultonset dementia disorders. These compounds were early leaved because their clinical efficacy was not clearly demonstrated. This is probably not true for some choline-containing phospholipids including choline alphoscerate. Choline alphoscerate increases the release of acetylcholine in rat hippocampus, facilitates learning and memory in experimental animals, improves brain transduction mechanisms and decreases age-dependent structural changes occurring in rat brain areas involved in learning and memory. The compound exerts neuroprotective effects in models of altered cholinergic neurotransmission and of brain vascular injury. In clinical studies choline alphoscerate improved memory and attention impairment, as well as affective and somatic symptoms in dementia disorders. An ongoing trial indicates that association between the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor donepezil and choline alphoscerate is accompanied by an improvement in several cognitive tests superior to that induced by donepezil alone. It is suggested that this association may represent a therapeutic option to prolong beneficial effects of cholinergic therapies in Alzheimer's disease patients with concomitant ischemic cerebrovascular disorders. In summary, choline alphoscerate has significant effects on cognitive function with a good safety profile and tolerability. Although limited both in terms of size of the samples investigated and of the length of treatment, preclinical and clinical results presented suggest that cognitive enhancing capabilities of choline alphoscerate merit of being further investigated in appropriate trials.

  12. A cell-based fascin bioassay identifies compounds with potential anti-metastasis or cognition-enhancing functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Kraft

    2013-01-01

    The actin-bundling protein fascin is a key mediator of tumor invasion and metastasis and its activity drives filopodia formation, cell-shape changes and cell migration. Small-molecule inhibitors of fascin block tumor metastasis in animal models. Conversely, fascin deficiency might underlie the pathogenesis of some developmental brain disorders. To identify fascin-pathway modulators we devised a cell-based assay for fascin function and used it in a bidirectional drug screen. The screen utilized cultured fascin-deficient mutant Drosophila neurons, whose neurite arbors manifest the ‘filagree’ phenotype. Taking a repurposing approach, we screened a library of 1040 known compounds, many of them FDA-approved drugs, for filagree modifiers. Based on scaffold distribution, molecular-fingerprint similarities, and chemical-space distribution, this library has high structural diversity, supporting its utility as a screening tool. We identified 34 fascin-pathway blockers (with potential anti-metastasis activity and 48 fascin-pathway enhancers (with potential cognitive-enhancer activity. The structural diversity of the active compounds suggests multiple molecular targets. Comparisons of active and inactive compounds provided preliminary structure-activity relationship information. The screen also revealed diverse neurotoxic effects of other drugs, notably the ‘beads-on-a-string’ defect, which is induced solely by statins. Statin-induced neurotoxicity is enhanced by fascin deficiency. In summary, we provide evidence that primary neuron culture using a genetic model organism can be valuable for early-stage drug discovery and developmental neurotoxicity testing. Furthermore, we propose that, given an appropriate assay for target-pathway function, bidirectional screening for brain-development disorders and invasive cancers represents an efficient, multipurpose strategy for drug discovery.

  13. The nicotinergic receptor as a target for cognitive enhancement in schizophrenia: Barking up the wrong tree?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Quisenaerts, C.; Morrens, M.; Hulstijn, W.; Bruijn, E.R.A. de; Timmers, M.; Streffer, J.; Asuncion, J. De la; Dumont, G.J.H.; Sabbe, B.G.C.

    2014-01-01

    Rationale Cognitive symptoms have increasingly been recognized as an important target in the development of future treatment strategies in schizophrenia. The nicotinergic neurotransmission system has been suggested as a potentially interesting treatment target for these cognitive deficits. However,

  14. Understanding the gender gap: Social cognitive changes during an introductory stem course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardin, Erin E; Longhurst, Melanie O

    2016-03-01

    Despite robust support for the basic theoretical model of social cognitive career theory (Lent, Brown, & Hackett, 1994) and predictions that, for example, increases (or declines) in self-efficacy would lead to subsequent increases (or declines) in interest, there has been surprisingly little longitudinal research that has directly examined the extent to which members of different groups (e.g., women and men) actually do experience changes in critical social-cognitive variables over time early in their curricula in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Knowing the extent to which such changes occur in typical introductory undergraduate courses is important for targeting interventions to increase persistence of underrepresented groups in STEM. We measured social-cognitive-career-theory-relevant variables near the middle and at the end of the 1st semester of a gateway introductory chemistry course and found that women had lower STEM self-efficacy, coping self-efficacy, and STEM interest than did men, even after controlling for actual course performance. Although there were no detrimental changes across the semester for women or men, men experienced a small but significant increase in their perceived support for pursuing a STEM degree, whereas women did not.

  15. Lessons from a Mouse Model Characterizing Features of Vascular Cognitive Impairment with White Matter Changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masafumi Ihara

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available With the demographic shift in age in advanced countries inexorably set to progress in the 21st century, dementia will become one of the most important health problems worldwide. Vascular cognitive impairment is the second most common type of dementia after Alzheimer's disease and is frequently responsible for the cognitive decline of the elderly. It is characterized by cerebrovascular white matter changes; thus, in order to investigate the underlying mechanisms involved in white matter changes, a mouse model of chronic cerebral hypoperfusion has been developed, which involves the narrowing of the bilateral common carotid arteries with newly designed microcoils. The purpose of this paper is to provide a comprehensive summary of the achievements made with the model that shows good reproducibility of the white matter changes characterized by blood-brain barrier disruption, glial activation, oxidative stress, and oligodendrocyte loss following chronic cerebral hypoperfusion. Detailed characterization of this model may help to decipher the substrates associated with impaired memory and move toward a more integrated therapy of vascular cognitive impairment.

  16. Cognitive Mediation of Symptom Change in Exposure and Response Prevention for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Yi-Jen; Carpenter, Joseph K; Zandberg, Laurie J; Simpson, Helen Blair; Foa, Edna B

    2016-07-01

    This study examined cognitive mediators of symptom change during exposure and response prevention (EX/RP) for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Based on cognitive models of OCD, obsessive beliefs were hypothesized as a mediator of symptom change. Participants were 70 patients with primary OCD receiving EX/RP either as part of a randomized controlled trial (n=38) or in open treatment following nonresponse to risperidone or placebo in the same trial (n=32). Blinded evaluations of OCD severity and self-report assessments of three domains of obsessive beliefs (i.e., responsibility/threat of harm, importance/control of thoughts, and perfectionism/intolerance of uncertainty) were administered during acute (Weeks 0, 4 and 8) and maintenance treatment (Weeks 12 and 24). Study hypotheses were examined using cross-lagged multilevel modeling. Contrary to predictions, the obsessive beliefs domains investigated did not mediate subsequent OCD symptom reduction. In addition, OCD symptoms did not significantly mediate subsequent change in obsessive beliefs. The present study did not find evidence of cognitive mediation during EX/RP for OCD, highlighting the need to investigate other plausible mediators of symptom improvement.

  17. Relationship between cognitive avoidant coping and changes in overgeneral autobiographical memory retrieval following an acute stressor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debeer, Elise; Raes, Filip; Claes, Stephan; Vrieze, Elske; Williams, J Mark G; Hermans, Dirk

    2012-12-01

    According to the functional avoidance hypothesis, overgeneral autobiographical memory, the tendency to retrieve personal memories in a less specific format, might serve an affect-regulating function. Reducing the specificity of memories of negative events may prevent individuals from re-experiencing the associated painful emotions. This cognitive avoidance strategy might not only be employed by depressed and traumatized patients, but also by healthy individuals. In the present study we tested the hypothesis that the increase in memory overgenerality induced by an acute stressor is positively correlated with habitual (cognitive) avoidant coping. Participants (N = 32) were exposed to a Trier Social Stress Test. Cognitive avoidant coping was measured at the start of the experiment by means of the Mainz Coping Inventory. Before, immediately after, and 40 min after the Trier Social Stress Test, autobiographical memory specificity was assessed by means of the Autobiographical Memory Test. Cognitive avoidant coping was significantly correlated with an increase in categoric memories from pre to immediately post stressor, but not with change in overgeneral memories from pre to 40 min post stressor. The results of the present experiment provide further support for functional avoidance as one of the mechanisms underlying overgeneral memory.

  18. Behavioral and cognitive changes after early postnatal lesions of the rat mediodorsal thalamus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouhaz, Zakaria; Ba-M'hamed, Saadia; Mitchell, Anna S; Elidrissi, Abdeslem; Bennis, Mohamed

    2015-10-01

    Early insults to the thalamus result in functional and/or structural abnormalities in the cerebral cortex. However, differences in behavioral and cognitive changes after early insult are not well characterized. The present study assessed whether early postnatal damage to mediodorsal nucleus of the thalamus (MD), reciprocally interconnected with the prefrontal cortex, causes behavioral and cognitive alterations in young adult rats. Rat pups at postnatal day 4 received bilateral electrolytic lesion of MD, or a MD Sham lesion or were anesthetized controls; on recovery they were returned to their mothers until weaning. Seven weeks later, all rats were tested with the following behavioral and cognitive paradigms: T-maze test, open field test, actimetry, elevated plus maze test, social interactions test and passive avoidance test. Rats with bilateral MD damage presented with disrupted recognition memory, deficits in shifting response rules, significant hypoactivity, increased anxiety-like behavior, deficits in learning associations as well as decreased locomotor activity, and reduced social interactions compared to MD Sham lesion and anesthetized Control rats. The lesion also caused significant decreases in pyramidal cell density in three frontal cortex regions: medial infralimbic cortex, dorsolateral anterior cortex, and cingulate Cg1 cortex. The present findings suggest a functional role for MD in the postnatal maturation of affective behavior. Further some of the behavioral and cognitive alterations observed in these young adult rats after early MD lesion are reminiscent of those present in major psycho-affective disorders, such as schizophrenia in humans.

  19. Employing Cognitive Chunking Techniques to Enhance Sight-Reading Performance of Undergraduate Group-Piano Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pike, Pamela D.; Carter, Rebecca

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to compare the effect of cognitive chunking techniques among first-semester group-piano music majors. The ability to group discrete pieces of information into larger, more meaningful chunks is essential for efficient cognitive processing. Since reading keyboard music and playing the piano is a cognitively complex…

  20. Enhancing urban infrastructure investment planning practices for a changing climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, J; Valeo, C; Bouchart, F J C

    2006-01-01

    Climate change raises many concerns for urban water management because of the effects on all aspects of the hydrological cycle. Urban water infrastructure has traditionally been designed using historical observations and assuming stationary climatic conditions. The capability of this infrastructure, whether for storm-water drainage, or water supply, may be over- or under-designed for future climatic conditions. In particular, changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme rainfall events will have the most acute effect on storm-water drainage systems. Therefore, it is necessary to take future climatic conditions into consideration in engineering designs in order to enhance water infrastructure investment planning practices in a long time horizon. This paper provides the initial results of a study that is examining ways to enhance urban infrastructure investment planning practices against changes in hydrologic regimes for a changing climate. Design storms and intensity-duration-frequency curves that are used in the engineering design of storm-water drainage systems are developed under future climatic conditions by empirically adjusting the general circulation model output, and using the Gumbel distribution and the Chicago method. Simulations are then performed on an existing storm-water drainage system from NE Calgary to investigate the resiliency of the system under climate change.

  1. Enhancement of numeric cognition in children with low achievement in mathematic after a non-instrumental musical training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, Fabiana Silva; Santos, Flávia H

    2017-03-01

    Studies suggest that musical training enhances spatial-temporal reasoning and leads to greater learning of mathematical concepts. The aim of this prospective study was to verify the efficacy of a Non-Instrumental Musical Training (NIMT) on the Numerical Cognition systems in children with low achievement in math. For this purpose, we examined, with a cluster analysis, whether children with low scores on Numerical Cognition would be grouped in the same cluster at pre and post-NIMT. Participants were primary school children divided into two groups according to their scores on an Arithmetic test. Results with a specialized battery of Numerical Cognition revealed improvements for Cluster 2 (children with low achievement in math) especially for number production capacity compared to normative data. Besides, the number of children with low scores in Numerical Cognition decreased at post-NIMT. These findings suggest that NIMT enhances Numerical Cognition and seems to be a useful tool for rehabilitation of children with low achievement in math.

  2. Brain training with non-action video games enhances aspects of cognition in older adults: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballesteros, Soledad; Prieto, Antonio; Mayas, Julia; Toril, Pilar; Pita, Carmen; Ponce de León, Laura; Reales, José M; Waterworth, John

    2014-01-01

    Age-related cognitive and brain declines can result in functional deterioration in many cognitive domains, dependency, and dementia. A major goal of aging research is to investigate methods that help to maintain brain health, cognition, independent living and wellbeing in older adults. This randomized controlled study investigated the effects of 20 1-h non-action video game training sessions with games selected from a commercially available package (Lumosity) on a series of age-declined cognitive functions and subjective wellbeing. Two groups of healthy older adults participated in the study, the experimental group who received the training and the control group who attended three meetings with the research team along the study. Groups were similar at baseline on demographics, vocabulary, global cognition, and depression status. All participants were assessed individually before and after the intervention, or a similar period of time, using neuropsychological tests and laboratory tasks to investigate possible transfer effects. The results showed significant improvements in the trained group, and no variation in the control group, in processing speed (choice reaction time), attention (reduction of distraction and increase of alertness), immediate and delayed visual recognition memory, as well as a trend to improve in Affection and Assertivity, two dimensions of the Wellbeing Scale. Visuospatial working memory (WM) and executive control (shifting strategy) did not improve. Overall, the current results support the idea that training healthy older adults with non-action video games will enhance some cognitive abilities but not others.

  3. Predictors of cognitive enhancement after training in preschoolers from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Soledad eSegretin

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The association between socioeconomic status and child cognitive development, and the positive impact of interventions aimed at optimizing cognitive performance, are well documented. However, few studies have examined how specific socio-environmental factors may moderate the impact of cognitive interventions among poor children. In the present study, we examined how such factors predicted cognitive trajectories during the preschool years, in two samples of children from Argentina, who participated in two cognitive training programs between the years 2002 and 2005: the School Intervention Program (SIP; N=745 and the Cognitive Training Program (CTP; N=333. In both programs children were trained weekly for 16 weeks and tested before and after the intervention using a battery of tasks assessing several cognitive control processes (attention, inhibitory control, working memory, flexibility and planning. After applying mixed model analyses, we identified sets of socio-environmental predictors that were associated with higher levels of pre-intervention cognitive control performance and with increased improvement in cognitive control from pre- to post-intervention. Child age, housing conditions, social resources, parental occupation and family composition were associated with performance in specific cognitive domains at baseline. Housing conditions, social resources, parental occupation, family composition, maternal physical health, age, group (intervention/control and the number of training sessions were related to improvements in specific cognitive skills from pre- to post-training.

  4. Older drivers with cognitive impairment: Perceived changes in driving skills, driving-related discomfort and self-regulation of driving

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meng, A.; Siren, A.; Teasdale, Thomas William

    2013-01-01

    The results of a previous study indicate that in general, older drivers who recognise cognitive problems show realistic self-assessment of changes in their driving skills and that driving-related discomfort may function as an indirect monitoring of driving ability, contributing to their safe...... driving performance. The aim of the present study was to examine whether these findings also apply to cognitively impaired older drivers. Structured face-to-face interviews were conducted with 25 cognitively impaired older drivers. The results showed that the participants were most likely to report...... their driving skills as unchanged. There was an association between level of discomfort and avoidance of driving situations, but not between cognitive status and discomfort or avoidance. The results suggest that cognitively impaired older drivers constitute a unique group; while cognitively impaired older...

  5. Session III: Mechanisms of age-related cognitive change and targets for intervention: inflammatory, oxidative, and metabolic processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craft, Suzanne; Foster, Thomas C; Landfield, Philip W; Maier, Steven F; Resnick, Susan M; Yaffe, Kristine

    2012-06-01

    There is increasing evidence from basic science and human epidemiological studies that inflammation, oxidative stress, and metabolic abnormalities are associated with age-related cognitive decline and impairment. This article summarizes selected research on these topics presented at the Cognitive Aging Summit II. Speakers in this session presented evidence highlighting the roles of these processes and pathways on age-related cognitive decline, pointing to possible targets for intervention in nondemented older adults. Specific areas discussed included age differences in the production of cytokines following injury or infection, mechanisms underlying oxidative stress-induced changes in memory consolidation, insulin effects on brain signaling and memory, and the association between metabolic syndrome and cognitive decline in older adults. These presentations emphasize advances in our understanding of mechanisms and modifiers of age-related cognitive decline and provide insights into potential targets to promote cognitive health in older adults.

  6. Using cognitive dissonance to enhance faculty members' attitudes toward teaching online courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiou, Wen-Bin

    2006-10-01

    Adopting a reward strategy for inducing college faculty to teach online courses is expected to cause a positive shift of their attitudes. Based upon dissonance theory, a smaller reward will lead to greater attitude change, and this effect will be more pronounced in individualists. The results of an experimental study showed that individualist teachers exhibited greater attitude change under low reward than under high reward, but the reward effect was not prominent in collectivist teachers. Implications for enhancing college teachers' attitudes toward teaching online courses are discussed.

  7. Prenatal Paraquat exposure induces neurobehavioral and cognitive changes in mice offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ait-Bali, Yassine; Ba-M'hamed, Saadia; Bennis, Mohammed

    2016-12-01

    In the present work, we investigated developmental toxicity of Paraquat (PQ), from the 1st or 6th day of mating and throughout the gestation period. We have examined several parameters, including toxicity indices, reproductive performance, sensorimotor development, as well as anxiety and cognitive performance of the offspring. Our results showed that exposure to 20mg/kg of Paraquat during the first days of pregnancy completely prevents pregnancy in treated mice, but from the 6th day of pregnancy, an alteration in fertility and reproductive parameters was observed. In offspring, the PQ was responsible for an overall delay of innate reflexes and a deficit in motor development. All exposed animals showed a decrease in the level of locomotor activity, increased levels of anxiety-like behavior and pronounced cognitive impairment in adulthood. These results demonstrated that Paraquat led to the onset of many behavioral changes that stem from the impairment of neuronal developmental processes in prenatally exposed mice.

  8. The contributions of cognitive neuroscience and neuroimaging to understanding mechanisms of behavior change in addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgenstern, Jon; Naqvi, Nasir H; Debellis, Robert; Breiter, Hans C

    2013-06-01

    In the last decade, there has been an upsurge of interest in understanding the mechanisms of behavior change (MOBC) and effective behavioral interventions as a strategy to improve addiction-treatment efficacy. However, there remains considerable uncertainty about how treatment research should proceed to address the MOBC issue. In this article, we argue that limitations in the underlying models of addiction that inform behavioral treatment pose an obstacle to elucidating MOBC. We consider how advances in the cognitive neuroscience of addiction offer an alternative conceptual and methodological approach to studying the psychological processes that characterize addiction, and how such advances could inform treatment process research. In addition, we review neuroimaging studies that have tested aspects of neurocognitive theories as a strategy to inform addiction therapies and discuss future directions for transdisciplinary collaborations across cognitive neuroscience and MOBC research.

  9. Changes in implicit and explicit self-esteem following cognitive and psychodynamic therapy in social anxiety disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritter, Viktoria; Leichsenring, Falk; Strauss, Bernhard Michael; Stangier, Ulrich

    2013-01-01

    The present investigation is the first to analyse changes in implicit and explicit self-esteem following cognitive therapy (CT) and psychodynamic therapy (PDT) in social anxiety disorder (SAD). We assessed a sub-sample of patients with SAD (n=27 per treatment group, n=12 waitlist condition) in the course of a randomized controlled trial prior to and following individual treatment or wait assessment with an Implicit Association Test and the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Both CT and PDT consisted of 25 sessions. Treatments were effective in enhancing implicit and explicit self-esteem. In CT and PDT, changes in explicit self-esteem were associated with SAD symptom change. No such relationships were found in implicit self-esteem. The results seem to indicate that both CT and PDT are effective in establishing a positive implicit and explicit self-esteem in SAD. The differential relationships of changes in implicit and explicit self-esteem to treatment effects on social phobic symptoms are discussed.

  10. Malaria-induced changes in host odors enhance mosquito attraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Moraes, Consuelo M; Stanczyk, Nina M; Betz, Heike S; Pulido, Hannier; Sim, Derek G; Read, Andrew F; Mescher, Mark C

    2014-07-29

    Vector-borne pathogens may alter traits of their primary hosts in ways that influence the frequency and nature of interactions between hosts and vectors. Previous work has reported enhanced mosquito attraction to host organisms infected with malaria parasites but did not address the mechanisms underlying such effects. Here we document malaria-induced changes in the odor profiles of infected mice (relative to healthy individuals) over the course of infection, as well as effects on the attractiveness of infected hosts to mosquito vectors. We observed enhanced mosquito attraction to infected mice during a key period after the subsidence of acute malaria symptoms, but during which mice remained highly infectious. This attraction corresponded to an overall elevation in the volatile emissions of infected mice observed during this period. Furthermore, data analyses--using discriminant analysis of principal components and random forest approaches--revealed clear differences in the composition of the volatile blends of infected and healthy individuals. Experimental manipulation of individual compounds that exhibited altered emission levels during the period when differential vector attraction was observed also elicited enhanced mosquito attraction, indicating that compounds being influenced by malaria infection status also mediate vector host-seeking behavior. These findings provide important insights into the cues that mediate vector attraction to hosts infected with transmissible stages of malaria parasites, as well as documenting characteristic changes in the odors of infected individuals that may have potential value as diagnostic biomarkers of infection.

  11. Cognition and Synaptic-Plasticity Related Changes in Aged Rats Supplemented with 8- and 10-Carbon Medium Chain Triglycerides

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Dongmei; Mitchell, Ellen S.

    2016-01-01

    Brain glucose hypometabolism is a common feature of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Previous studies have shown that cognition is improved by providing AD patients with an alternate energy source: ketones derived from either ketogenic diet or supplementation with medium chain triglycerides (MCT). Recently, data on the neuroprotective capacity of MCT-derived medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) suggest 8-carbon and 10-carbon MCFA may have cognition-enhancing properties which are not related to ketone pro...

  12. Changes of quality of life and cognitive function in individuals with Internet gaming disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Jae-A; Lee, Jun-Young; Jung, Hee Yeon; Sohn, Bo Kyung; Choi, Sam-Wook; Kim, Yeon Jin; Kim, Dai-Jin; Choi, Jung-Seok

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Internet gaming disorder (IGD) contributes to poor quality of life (QOL) and cognitive dysfunction and is increasingly recognized as a social problem in various countries. However, no evidence exists to determine whether QOL and cognitive dysfunction stabilize after appropriate management. The present study addressed improvement in QOL and cognitive functioning associated with changes in addiction symptoms following outpatient management for IGD. A total of 84 young males (IGD group: N = 44, mean age: 19.159 ± 5.216 years; healthy control group: N = 40, mean age: 21.375 ± 6.307 years) participated in this study. We administered self-report questionnaires at baseline to assess clinical and psychological characteristics, and conducted traditional and computerized neuropsychological tests. Nineteen patients with IGD completed follow-up tests in the same manner after 6 months of outpatient treatment, which included pharmacotherapy with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. A baseline comparison of patients with IGD against the healthy control group showed that the IGD patients had more symptoms of depression and anxiety, higher degrees of impulsiveness and anger/aggression, higher levels of distress, poorer QOL, and impaired response inhibition. After 6 months of treatment, patients with IGD showed significant improvements in the severity of IGD, as well as in QOL, response inhibition, and executive functioning. Additionally, a stepwise multiple regression analysis revealed a favorable prognosis for IGD patients with low working memory functioning and high executive functioning at baseline. These results provide evidence regarding longitudinal changes in QOL and cognitive function following psychiatric intervention for IGD. Furthermore, it appears that response inhibition may be an objective state marker underlying the pathophysiology of IGD. PMID:27977620

  13. Cognitive fitness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilkey, Roderick; Kilts, Clint

    2007-11-01

    Recent neuroscientific research shows that the health of your brain isn't, as experts once thought, just the product of childhood experiences and genetics; it reflects your adult choices and experiences as well. Professors Gilkey and Kilts of Emory University's medical and business schools explain how you can strengthen your brain's anatomy, neural networks, and cognitive abilities, and prevent functions such as memory from deteriorating as you age. The brain's alertness is the result of what the authors call cognitive fitness -a state of optimized ability to reason, remember, learn, plan, and adapt. Certain attitudes, lifestyle choices, and exercises enhance cognitive fitness. Mental workouts are the key. Brain-imaging studies indicate that acquiring expertise in areas as diverse as playing a cello, juggling, speaking a foreign language, and driving a taxicab expands your neural systems and makes them more communicative. In other words, you can alter the physical makeup of your brain by learning new skills. The more cognitively fit you are, the better equipped you are to make decisions, solve problems, and deal with stress and change. Cognitive fitness will help you be more open to new ideas and alternative perspectives. It will give you the capacity to change your behavior and realize your goals. You can delay senescence for years and even enjoy a second career. Drawing from the rapidly expanding body of neuroscience research as well as from well-established research in psychology and other mental health fields, the authors have identified four steps you can take to become cognitively fit: understand how experience makes the brain grow, work hard at play, search for patterns, and seek novelty and innovation. Together these steps capture some of the key opportunities for maintaining an engaged, creative brain.

  14. What users think about the differences between caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants for cognitive enhancement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas G Franke

    Full Text Available Pharmacological cognitive enhancement (CE is a topic of increasing public awareness. In the scientific literature on student use of CE as a study aid for academic performance enhancement, there are high prevalence rates regarding the use of caffeinated substances (coffee, caffeinated drinks, caffeine tablets but remarkably lower prevalence rates regarding the use of illicit/prescription stimulants such as amphetamines or methylphenidate. While the literature considers the reasons and mechanisms for these different prevalence rates from a theoretical standpoint, it lacks empirical data to account for healthy students who use both, caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants, exclusively for the purpose of CE. Therefore, we extensively interviewed a sample of 18 healthy university students reporting non-medical use of caffeine as well as illicit/prescription stimulants for the purpose of CE in a face-to-face setting about their opinions regarding differences in general and morally-relevant differences between caffeine and stimulant use for CE. 44% of all participants answered that there is a general difference between the use of caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants for CE, 28% did not differentiate, 28% could not decide. Furthermore, 39% stated that there is a moral difference, 56% answered that there is no moral difference and one participant was not able to comment on moral aspects. Participants came to their judgements by applying three dimensions: medical, ethical and legal. Weighing the medical, ethical and legal aspects corresponded to the students' individual preferences of substances used for CE. However, their views only partly depicted evidence-based medical aspects and the ethical issues involved. This result shows the need for well-directed and differentiated information to prevent the potentially harmful use of illicit or prescription stimulants for CE.

  15. What users think about the differences between caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants for cognitive enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franke, Andreas G; Lieb, Klaus; Hildt, Elisabeth

    2012-01-01

    Pharmacological cognitive enhancement (CE) is a topic of increasing public awareness. In the scientific literature on student use of CE as a study aid for academic performance enhancement, there are high prevalence rates regarding the use of caffeinated substances (coffee, caffeinated drinks, caffeine tablets) but remarkably lower prevalence rates regarding the use of illicit/prescription stimulants such as amphetamines or methylphenidate. While the literature considers the reasons and mechanisms for these different prevalence rates from a theoretical standpoint, it lacks empirical data to account for healthy students who use both, caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants, exclusively for the purpose of CE. Therefore, we extensively interviewed a sample of 18 healthy university students reporting non-medical use of caffeine as well as illicit/prescription stimulants for the purpose of CE in a face-to-face setting about their opinions regarding differences in general and morally-relevant differences between caffeine and stimulant use for CE. 44% of all participants answered that there is a general difference between the use of caffeine and illicit/prescription stimulants for CE, 28% did not differentiate, 28% could not decide. Furthermore, 39% stated that there is a moral difference, 56% answered that there is no moral difference and one participant was not able to comment on moral aspects. Participants came to their judgements by applying three dimensions: medical, ethical and legal. Weighing the medical, ethical and legal aspects corresponded to the students' individual preferences of substances used for CE. However, their views only partly depicted evidence-based medical aspects and the ethical issues involved. This result shows the need for well-directed and differentiated information to prevent the potentially harmful use of illicit or prescription stimulants for CE.

  16. Cognitive-Enhancing Effect of Aronia melanocarpa Extract against Memory Impairment Induced by Scopolamine in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hyeon Yong Lee

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Aronia melanocarpa (A. melanocarpa berries are a fruit with a marked antioxidant effect. The objective of this study was to confirm the effect of A. melanocarpa berries extract against scopolamine-induced memory impairment in mice using the Morris water maze and passive avoidance test. Moreover, we determined a possible mechanism of the cognitive-enhancing effect involving AChE activity and BDNF and p-CREB expression in the hippocampus of mice. A. melanocarpa berries extract attenuated the learning and memory impairment induced by scopolamine in the Morris water maze (79.3 ± 0.8 s of 200 mg/kg and 64.4 ± 10.7 s of 400 mg/kg on day 4 and passive avoidance tests (46.0 ± 41.1 s of 200 mg/kg and 25.6 ± 18.7 s of 400 mg/kg. A. melanocarpa berries extract reduced the acetylcholinesterase level in the hippocampus of scopolamine-injected mice and increased BDNF and p-CREB expression in the hippocampus. The major compound, cyanidin-3-O-galactoside, also reversed memory impairment. These results showed that A. melanocarpa berries extract improved memory impairment by inhibiting AChE and increasing BDNF and p-CREB expression, and cyanidin-3-O-galactoside may be responsible for the effect of A. melanocarpa berries extract.

  17. Using decision models to enhance investigations of individual differences in cognitive neuroscience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corey N White

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available There is great interest in relating individual differences in cognitive processing to activation of neural systems. The general process involves relating measures of task performance like reaction times or accuracy to brain activity to identify individual differences in neural processing. One limitation of this approach is that measures like reaction times can be affected by multiple components of processing. For instance, some individuals might have higher accuracy in a memory task because they respond more cautiously, not because they have better memory. Computational models of decision making, like the drift-diffusion model and the linear ballistic accumulator model, provide a potential solution to this problem. They can be fitted to data from individual participants to disentangle the effects of the different processes driving behavior. In this sense the models can provide cleaner measures of the processes of interest, and enhance our understanding of how neural activity varies across individuals or populations. The advantages of this model-based approach to investigating individual differences in neural activity are discussed with recent examples of how this method can improve our understanding of the brain-behavior relationship.

  18. Using Decision Models to Enhance Investigations of Individual Differences in Cognitive Neuroscience

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Corey N.; Curl, Ryan A.; Sloane, Jennifer F.

    2016-01-01

    There is great interest in relating individual differences in cognitive processing to activation of neural systems. The general process involves relating measures of task performance like reaction times or accuracy to brain activity to identify individual differences in neural processing. One limitation of this approach is that measures like reaction times can be affected by multiple components of processing. For instance, some individuals might have higher accuracy in a memory task because they respond more cautiously, not because they have better memory. Computational models of decision making, like the drift–diffusion model and the linear ballistic accumulator model, provide a potential solution to this problem. They can be fitted to data from individual participants to disentangle the effects of the different processes driving behavior. In this sense the models can provide cleaner measures of the processes of interest, and enhance our understanding of how neural activity varies across individuals or populations. The advantages of this model-based approach to investigating individual differences in neural activity are discussed with recent examples of how this method can improve our understanding of the brain–behavior relationship. PMID:26903896

  19. Perinatal exposure to methoxychlor enhances adult cognitive responses and hippocampal neurogenesis in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariangela eMartini

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available During perinatal life, sex steroids, such as estradiol, have marked effects on the development and function of the nervous system. Environmental estrogens or xenoestrogens are man-made chemicals, which animal and human population encounter in the environment and which are able to disrupt the functioning of the endocrine system. Scientific interest in the effects of exposure to xenoestrogens has focused more on fertility and reproductive behaviors, while the effects on cognitive behaviors have received less attention. Therefore, the present study explored whether the organochlorine insecticide Methoxychlor (MXC, with known xenoestrogens properties, administered during the perinatal period (from gestational day 11 to postnatal day 8 to pregnant-lactating females, at an environmentally relevant dose (20µg/kg (body weight/day, would also affect learning and memory functions depending on the hippocampus of male and female offspring mice in adulthood. When tested in adulthood, MXC perinatal exposure led to an increase in anxiety-like behavior and in short-term spatial working memory in both sexes. Emotional learning was also assessed using a contextual fear paradigm and MXC treated male and female mice showed an enhanced freezing behavior compared to controls. These results were correlated with an increased survival of adult generated cells in the adult hippocampus. In conclusion, our results show that perinatal exposure to an environmentally relevant dose of MXC has an organizational effect on hippocampus-dependent memory and emotional behaviors.

  20. CPP-TRS(C): On using visual cognitive symbols to enhance communication effectiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tonfoni, Graziella

    1994-01-01

    Communicative Positioning Program/Text Representation Systems (CPP-TRS) is a visual language based on a system of 12 canvasses, 10 signals and 14 symbols. CPP-TRS is based on the fact that every communication action is the result of a set of cognitive processes and the whole system is based on the concept that you can enhance communication by visually perceiving text. With a simple syntax, CPP-TRS is capable of representing meaning and intention as well as communication functions visually. Those are precisely invisible aspects of natural language that are most relevant to getting the global meaning of a text. CPP-TRS reinforces natural language in human machine interaction systems. It complements natural language by adding certain important elements that are not represented by natural language by itself. These include communication intention and function of the text expressed by the sender, as well as the role the reader is supposed to play. The communication intention and function of a text and the reader's role are invisible in natural language because neither specific words nor punctuation conveys them sufficiently and unambiguously; they are therefore non-transparent.

  1. Mobility-Enhanced Reliable Geographical Forwarding in Cognitive Radio Sensor Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suleiman Zubair

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of the Internet of Things and the proliferation of mobile wireless devices has brought the area of mobile cognitive radio sensor networks (MCRSN to the research spot light. Notwithstanding the potentials of CRSNs in terms of opportunistic channel usage for bursty traffic, the effect of the mobility of resource-constrained nodes to route stability, mobility-induced spatio-temporal spectral opportunities and primary user (PU protection still remain open issues that need to be jointly addressed. To this effect, this paper proposes a mobile reliable geographical forwarding routing (MROR protocol. MROR provides a robust mobile framework for geographical forwarding that is based on a mobility-induced channel availability model. It presents a comprehensive routing strategy that considers PU activity (to take care of routes that have to be built through PU coverage, PU signal protection (by the introduction of a mobility-induced guard (mguard distance and the random mobility-induced spatio-temporal spectrum opportunities (for enhancement of throughput. It also addresses the issue of frequent route maintenance that arises when speeds of the mobile nodes are considered as a routing metric. As a result, simulation has shown the ability of MROR to reduce the route failure rate by about 65% as against other schemes. In addition, further results show that MROR can improve both the throughput and goodput at the sink in an energy-efficient manner that is required in CRSNs as against compared works.

  2. Mobility-Enhanced Reliable Geographical Forwarding in Cognitive Radio Sensor Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zubair, Suleiman; Syed Yusoff, Sharifah Kamilah; Fisal, Norsheila

    2016-01-29

    The emergence of the Internet of Things and the proliferation of mobile wireless devices has brought the area of mobile cognitive radio sensor networks (MCRSN) to the research spot light. Notwithstanding the potentials of CRSNs in terms of opportunistic channel usage for bursty traffic, the effect of the mobility of resource-constrained nodes to route stability, mobility-induced spatio-temporal spectral opportunities and primary user (PU) protection still remain open issues that need to be jointly addressed. To this effect, this paper proposes a mobile reliable geographical forwarding routing (MROR) protocol. MROR provides a robust mobile framework for geographical forwarding that is based on a mobility-induced channel availability model. It presents a comprehensive routing strategy that considers PU activity (to take care of routes that have to be built through PU coverage), PU signal protection (by the introduction of a mobility-induced guard (mguard) distance) and the random mobility-induced spatio-temporal spectrum opportunities (for enhancement of throughput). It also addresses the issue of frequent route maintenance that arises when speeds of the mobile nodes are considered as a routing metric. As a result, simulation has shown the ability of MROR to reduce the route failure rate by about 65% as against other schemes. In addition, further results show that MROR can improve both the throughput and goodput at the sink in an energy-efficient manner that is required in CRSNs as against compared works.

  3. The interactive effect of change in perceived stress and trait anxiety on vagal recovery from cognitive challenge

    OpenAIRE

    Crowley, Olga V.; McKinley, Paula S.; Burg, Matthew M.; Schwartz, Joseph E.; Ryff, Carol D.; Weinstein, Maxine; Seeman, Teresa E.; Sloan, Richard P.

    2011-01-01

    The present study tested the hypothesis that the change in state negative affect (measured as perceived stress) after cognitive challenge moderates the relationship of trait anxiety and anger to vagal recovery from that challenge.

  4. Dynamic spectrum allocations in multi-cells and intra-cell of cognitive network to enhance system performance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Su Xi; Shen Shuqun; Li Zheng; Zhang Lei

    2010-01-01

    In this study,we propose new dynamic spectrum allocations in multi-cells and intra-cell of cognitive network to enhance system performance in terms of decreasing probability of interruption and spectrum handoff of communication services in a cognitive system.The inter-cells of the spectrum allocation mechanism is designed to share the risk of vacating spectrum caused by licensed incumbents re-occupying the spectrum and minimize probability of service interruption in the cognitive network.This mechanism also can guarantee fairness among multi-cells.The intra-cell of the proposed spectrum allocation is based on a service data hierarchical model and establishes a mapping mechanism between layered data and the spectrum.It can reduce probability of spectrum handoff.Finally,simulation results are given and show that the new mechanism can reduce service interruption ratio and the probability of spectrum handoff caused by licensed incumbents with reoccupying the spectrum.

  5. Changes in the self during cognitive behavioural therapy for social anxiety disorder: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory, Bree; Peters, Lorna

    2017-03-01

    A consistent feature across cognitive-behavioural models of social anxiety disorder (SAD) is the central role of the self in the emergence and maintenance of the disorder. The strong emphasis placed on the self in these models and related empirical research has also been reflected in evidence-based treatments for the disorder. This systematic review provides an overview of the empirical literature investigating the role of self-related constructs (e.g., self-beliefs, self-images, self-focused attention) proposed in cognitive models of SAD, before examining how these constructs are modified during and following CBT for SAD. Forty-one studies met the inclusion criteria. Guided by Stopa's (2009a, b) model of self, most studies examined change in self-related content, followed by change in self-related processing. No study examined change in self-structure. Pre- to post-treatment reductions were observed in self-related thoughts and beliefs, self-esteem, self-schema, self-focused attention, and self-evaluation. Change in self-related constructs predicted and/or mediated social anxiety reduction, however relatively few studies examined this. Papers were limited by small sample sizes, failure to control for depression symptoms, lack of waitlist, and some measurement concerns. Future research directions are discussed.

  6. Associations between therapy skills and patient experiences of change processes in cognitive behavioral therapy for psychosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wittorf, Andreas; Jakobi-Malterre, Ute E; Beulen, Silke; Bechdolf, Andreas; Müller, Bernhard W; Sartory, Gudrun; Wagner, Michael; Wiedemann, Georg; Wölwer, Wolfgang; Herrlich, Jutta; Klingberg, Stefan

    2013-12-30

    Despite the promising findings in relation to the efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapy for psychosis (CBTp), little attention has been paid to the therapy skills necessary to deliver CBTp and to the influence of such skills on processes underlying therapeutic change. Our study investigated the associations between general and technical therapy skills and patient experiences of change processes in CBTp. The study sample consisted of 79 patients with psychotic disorders who had undergone CBTp. We randomly selected one tape-recorded therapy session from each of the cases. General and technical therapy skills were assessed by the Cognitive Therapy Scale for Psychosis. The Bern Post Session Report for Patients was applied to measure patient experiences of general change processes in the sense of Grawe's psychological therapy. General skills, such as feedback and understanding, explained 23% of the variance of patients' self-esteem experience, but up to 10% of the variance of mastery, clarification, and contentment experiences. The technical skill of guided discovery consistently showed negative associations with patients' alliance, contentment, and control experiences. The study points to the importance of general therapy skills for patient experiences of change processes in CBTp. Some technical skills, however, could detrimentally affect the therapeutic relationship.

  7. FDG-PET in the Evaluation of Brain Metabolic Changes Induced by Cognitive Stimulation in aMCI Subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciarmiello, Andrea; Gaeta, Maria Chiara; Benso, Francesco; Del Sette, Massimo

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive training has reported to improve cognitive performance in Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) as well as in older healthy subjects. 18F-FDG-PET is widely used in the diagnoses of dementia for its ability to identify early metabolic changes. This study was aimed to assess the effect of cognitive stimulation on brain metabolic network and clinical cognitive performance. Thirty aMCI subjects were enrolled in the study and allocated in two groups matched for cognitive profile, sex and schooling and then randomly assigned to the training arm or to the placebo arm. All subjects underwent neuropsychological assessment and PET imaging before and after intervention. We found significant association between brain metabolism and cognitive stimulation in treated aMCI subjects. Brain metabolic changes included Brodmann areas reported to be involved in working memory and attentive processes as well as executive functions. Our study shows that metabolic changes occur earlier than possible clinical changes related to the intervention. 18F-FDG-PET could provide a useful biomarker of response to identify a population of aMCI suitable to respond to treatment, according to most recent data on default network mode and its adaptivity to external stimuli.

  8. Potential cognitive enhancing and disease modification effects of SSRIs for Alzheimer’s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Chow, Tiffany W.; Pollock, Bruce G; Milgram, Norton W.

    2007-01-01

    Objective Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) have increased cognitive performance in some clinical studies of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), but it is has been difficult to dissociate whether this is due to direct effects on cognition (neurochemical or disease-modifying) or a secondary effect of mood stabilization. We performed a systematic review for preclinical and human clinical trial evidence to support the use of SSRIs specifically for the management of cognitive decline in AD. D...

  9. Structural brain changes after traditional and robot-assisted multi-domain cognitive training in community-dwelling healthy elderly.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geon Ha Kim

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to investigate if multi-domain cognitive training, especially robot-assisted training, alters cortical thickness in the brains of elderly participants. A controlled trial was conducted with 85 volunteers without cognitive impairment who were 60 years old or older. Participants were first randomized into two groups. One group consisted of 48 participants who would receive cognitive training and 37 who would not receive training. The cognitive training group was randomly divided into two groups, 24 who received traditional cognitive training and 24 who received robot-assisted cognitive training. The training for both groups consisted of daily 90-min-session, five days a week for a total of 12 weeks. The primary outcome was the changes in cortical thickness. When compared to the control group, both groups who underwent cognitive training demonstrated attenuation of age related cortical thinning in the frontotemporal association cortices. When the robot and the traditional interventions were directly compared, the robot group showed less cortical thinning in the anterior cingulate cortices. Our results suggest that cognitive training can mitigate age-associated structural brain changes in the elderly.ClnicalTrials.gov NCT01596205.

  10. Loss in Executive Functioning Best Explains Changes in Pain Responsiveness in Patients with Dementia-Related Cognitive Decline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam Kunz

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available There is ample evidence that dementia changes the processing of pain. However, it is not known whether this change in pain processing is related to the general decline in cognitive functioning or whether it may be related to specific domains of cognitive functioning. With the present study we tried to answer this question. We assessed different cognitive domains (orientation, memory, abstract thinking/executive function, aphasia and apraxia, and information processing speed in 70 older patients with cognitive impairment (mild cognitive impairment up to moderate degrees of dementia. Pain responsiveness was assessed by measuring the nociceptive flexion reflex (NFR threshold and facial responses to noxious electrical stimulation. Using regression analyses, we assessed which domain of cognitive functioning best predicted variance in pain responsiveness. Variance in pain responsiveness (NFR and facial expressions was best explained by those items assessing executive functioning even when controlling for overall cognitive performance and memory functioning. The close association between executive functioning and pain responsiveness suggests that dementia-related neurodegeneration in prefrontal areas might result not only in reduced executive functioning but also in a loss of pain inhibitory potency, rendering the patient more vulnerable to pain. Our findings also suggest that pain assessment in dementia should be regularly completed by tests of cognitive functions.

  11. Loss in Executive Functioning Best Explains Changes in Pain Responsiveness in Patients with Dementia-Related Cognitive Decline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Miriam; Mylius, Veit; Schepelmann, Karsten; Lautenbacher, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    There is ample evidence that dementia changes the processing of pain. However, it is not known whether this change in pain processing is related to the general decline in cognitive functioning or whether it may be related to specific domains of cognitive functioning. With the present study we tried to answer this question. We assessed different cognitive domains (orientation, memory, abstract thinking/executive function, aphasia and apraxia, and information processing speed) in 70 older patients with cognitive impairment (mild cognitive impairment up to moderate degrees of dementia). Pain responsiveness was assessed by measuring the nociceptive flexion reflex (NFR) threshold and facial responses to noxious electrical stimulation. Using regression analyses, we assessed which domain of cognitive functioning best predicted variance in pain responsiveness. Variance in pain responsiveness (NFR and facial expressions) was best explained by those items assessing executive functioning even when controlling for overall cognitive performance and memory functioning. The close association between executive functioning and pain responsiveness suggests that dementia-related neurodegeneration in prefrontal areas might result not only in reduced executive functioning but also in a loss of pain inhibitory potency, rendering the patient more vulnerable to pain. Our findings also suggest that pain assessment in dementia should be regularly completed by tests of cognitive functions.

  12. Changes in Parahippocampal White Matter Integrity in Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Diffusion Tensor Imaging Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. J. Rogalski

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available In the present study, changes in the parahippocampal white matter (PWM, in the region that includes the perforant path, were investigated, in vivo, in 14 individuals with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI compared to 14 elderly controls with no cognitive impairment (NCI. For this purpose, (1 volumetry; (2 diffusion tensor imaging (DTI derived measures of mean diffusivity (MD and fractional anisotropy (FA; and (3 tractography were used. In addition, regression models were utilized to examine the association of PWM measurements with memory decline. The results from this study confirm previous findings in our laboratory and others, showing that compared to controls, individuals with aMCI have PWM volume loss. In addition to volume reduction, participants with aMCI demonstrated a significant increase in MD, but no difference in FA, both in the PWM region and in fibers modeled to pass through the PWM region. Further, the DTI metric of MD was associated with declarative memory performance, suggesting it may be a sensitive marker for memory dysfunction. These results indicate that there is general tissue loss and degradation (decreased volume; increased MD in individuals with aMCI compared to older people with normal cognitive function. However, the microstructural organization of remaining fibers, as determined by measures of anisotropic diffusion, is not significantly different from that of controls.

  13. Efficacy of cognitive enhancers for Alzheimer’s disease: protocol for a systematic review and network meta-analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tricco Andrea C

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Approximately 35 million people world-wide have Alzheimer’s disease and this is projected to nearly double by 2030. Cognitive enhancers, including cholinesterase inhibitors (for example, donepezil, galantamine and rivastigmine and memantine (N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA receptor antagonist have been approved for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease in many countries. Our objective is to evaluate the comparative effectiveness, safety, and cost of cognitive enhancers for Alzheimer’s disease through a systematic review. Methods/design Studies examining the efficacy, safety, and cost of cognitive enhancers compared to placebo, supportive care, and other cognitive enhancers for Alzheimer’s patients will be included. The primary outcome is cognition and secondary outcomes include function, behavior, quality of life, safety, and cost. Experimental studies (randomized controlled trials, quasi-randomized controlled trials, controlled clinical trials, quasi-experimental studies (controlled before-after, interrupted time series, and observational studies (cohort, case–control studies will be eligible for inclusion. Inclusion will not be limited by publication status, time period or language of dissemination. We will search electronic databases (for example, MEDLINE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, EMBASE, CINAHL, Ageline from inception onwards. The electronic database search will be supplemented by searching for grey literature (for example, conference proceedings, searches in Google and relevant organization websites. Two reviewers will independently screen the studies for inclusion using the eligibility criteria established a priori and independently extract data. Risk of bias will be assessed using the Cochrane Risk of Bias tool for experimental and quasi-experimental studies and the Newcastle Ottawa Scale for observational studies. If deemed appropriate, meta-analysis and network (that is, indirect

  14. Acute high-intensity exercise-induced cognitive enhancement and brain-derived neurotrophic factor in young, healthy adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Jungyun; Brothers, R Matthew; Castelli, Darla M; Glowacki, Elizabeth M; Chen, Yen T; Salinas, Mandy M; Kim, Jihoon; Jung, Yeonhak; Calvert, Hannah G

    2016-09-06

    Acute exercise can positively impact cognition. The present study examined the effect of acute high-intensity aerobic exercise on prefrontal-dependent cognitive performance and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Fifty-eight young adults were randomly assigned to one of two experimental groups: (a) an acute bout of high-intensity exercise (n=29) or (b) a non-exercise control (n=29). Participants in the exercise group improved performance on inhibitory control in Stroop interference and on cognitive flexibility in Trail Making Test (TMT) Part-B compared with participants in the control group and increased BDNF immediately after exercise. There was a significant relationship between BDNF and TMT Part-B on the pre-post change following exercise. These findings provide support for the association between improved prefrontal-dependent cognitive performance and increased BDNF in response to acute exercise. We conclude that the changes in BDNF concentration may be partially responsible for prefrontal-dependent cognitive functioning following an acute bout of exercise.

  15. Naturally-occurring changes in social-cognitive factors modify change in physical activity during early adolescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowda, Marsha; McIver, Kerry L.; Saunders, Ruth P.; Pate, Russell R.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose To determine whether naturally-occurring changes in children’s motives and beliefs are associated with the steep decline in physical activity observed from childhood to early adolescence. Methods Latent growth modeling was applied in longitudinal tests of social-cognitive influences, and their interactions, on physical activity in a large cohort of boys and girls evaluated annually between 5th and 7th grades. Results Measurement equivalence of motives and beliefs was confirmed between boys and girls. After adjustment for gender and maturity differences, physical activity declined less in children who reported the least decreases in self-efficacy for overcoming barriers to activity and perceived parental support. Physical activity also declined less in students who persistently felt they had more parental and friend support for activity compared to those who reported the largest decrease in support from friends. After further adjustment for race, the decline in physical activity was less in those who had the largest decrease in perceived barriers and maintained a favorable perception of their neighborhood environment. Changes in enjoyment and social motives were unrelated to change in physical activity. Conclusion Using an objective measure of physical activity, we confirm that naturally-occurring changes in children’s beliefs about barriers to physical activity and their ability to overcome them, as well as perceptions of their neighborhood environment and social support, are concurrent with age-related declines in children’s physical activity. The longitudinal findings confirm these putative social-cognitive mediators as plausible, interacting targets of interventions designed to mitigate the marked decline in physical activity that occurs during the transition between elementary and middle schools. PMID:28187192

  16. Developmental Model Using Gestalt-Play versus Cognitive-Verbal Group with Chinese Adolescents: Effects on Strengths and Adjustment Enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Yih-Jiun

    2007-01-01

    This study compared the effectiveness of short-term developmental group counseling applying Gestalt-play versus cognitive-verbal approaches with Taiwanese adolescents. On a measure of behavioral and emotional strengths, teachers reported significant changes in students' overall behavioral and emotional strengths measured via total scores. Specific…

  17. Stochastic cortical neurodynamics underlying the memory and cognitive changes in aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rolls, Edmund T; Deco, Gustavo

    2015-02-01

    The relatively random spiking times of individual neurons provide a source of noise in the brain. We show how this noise interacting with altered depth in the basins of attraction of networks involved in short-term memory, attention, and episodic memory provide an approach to understanding some of the cognitive changes in normal aging. The effects of the neurobiological changes in aging that are considered include reduced synaptic modification and maintenance during learning produced in part through reduced acetylcholine in normal aging, reduced dopamine which reduces NMDA-receptor mediated effects, reduced noradrenaline which increases cAMP and thus shunts excitatory synaptic inputs, and the effects of a reduction in acetylcholine in increasing spike frequency adaptation. Using integrate-and-fire simulations of an attractor network implementing memory recall and short-term memory, it is shown that all these changes associated with aging reduce the firing rates of the excitatory neurons, which in turn reduce the depth of the basins of attraction, resulting in a much decreased probability in maintaining in short-term memory what has been recalled from the attractor network. This stochastic dynamics approach opens up new ways to understand and potentially treat the effects of normal aging on memory and cognitive functions.

  18. Effects of galangal extract on cognitive dysfunction and nerve pathological change in rats with diabetic encephalopathy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Dao-Rui Yu; Tao Wang; Li-Ping Ji; Xing-Yue Fang; Xi-Nan Yi; Qi-Bing Liu

    2016-01-01

    Objective:To evaluate the effects of galangal extract on cognitive dysfunction and nerve pathological change in rats with diabetic encephalopathy.Methods: Sixty male SD rats were given high sugar and fat diet except the control group. Fifty days later, the animals were injected with STZ 30 mg/kg through intraperitoneal to establish type 2 diabetes model. Rats were divided into control group, model group, Metformin group, oxiracetam group, galangal extract high and low dose group. After 4-week administration, Morris water maze was utilized to investigate the effects of different galangal extract on learning and memory ability in rats. After behavioral testing, the blood sugar level was detected. Meanwhile, spectrophotometer was used to measure the superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and maleic dialdehyde (MDA) content of brain tissue. HE staining was used to observe the morphological changes in the hippocampus.Results: Galangal extract can significantly reduce swimming time and swimming distance of diabetic encephalopathy rat model, lower fasting blood glucose while increase body weight. At the same time, SOD activity and MDA content of rat brain were reduced. The morphology of neurons in hippocampus was improved and neuronal nuclear condensation was reduced correspondingly.Conclusions:Galangal extract can significantly improve cognitive ability in diabetic rats, reduce hippocampal pathological changes and have some prevention or treatment effects on of diabetes encephalopathy.

  19. Does aging change docosahexaenoic acid homeostasis? Implications for the challenge to cognitive health in the elderly

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Castellano Christian-Alexandre

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available Epidemiological studies fairly convincingly suggest that higher intake of fish and omega-3 fatty acids present in fish is associated with reduced risk for age-related cognitive decline (ARCD. Normally, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA in plasma is positively associated with DHA intake. However, despite being associated with lower fish and DHA intake, unexpectedly, ARCD is not consistently associated with lower plasma DHA. Furthermore, DHA is often slightly but significantly higher in plasma and erythrocytes in the elderly without ARCD compared to young adults. Higher plasma DHA in the elderly may be a sign that their fish or DHA intake is higher but we show here that various aspects of DHA homeostasis also change with age. Our supplementation and tracer studies show that DHA metabolism, e.g. transit through the plasma and apparent retroconversion but not beta-oxidation, is different in healthy elderly compared to healthy young adults. Apolipoprotein E4 increases the risk of ARCD, possibly in part because it changes DHA homeostasis. Therefore, independent of differences in fish intake, changing DHA homeostasis may contribute to making the elderly more susceptible to cognitive decline despite them having similar or sometimes higher plasma DHA than in younger adults.

  20. The importance of being subtle: small changes in calcium homeostasis control cognitive decline in normal aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toescu, Emil C; Verkhratsky, Alexei

    2007-06-01

    Aging is a complex, multifactorial process. One of the features of normal aging of the brain is a decline in cognitive functions and much experimental attention has been devoted to understanding this process. Evidence accumulated in the last decade indicates that such functional changes are not due to gross morphological alterations, but to subtle functional modification of synaptic connectivity and intracellular signalling and metabolism. Such synaptic modifications are compatible with a normal level of activity and allow the maintenance of a certain degree of functional reserve. This is in contrast to the changes in various neurodegenerative diseases, characterized by significant neuronal loss and dramatic and irreversible functional deficit. This whole special issue has been initiated with the intention of focusing on the processes of normal brain aging. In this review, we present data that shows how subtle changes in Ca(2+) homeostasis or in the state of various Ca(2+)-dependent processes or molecules, which occur in aging can have significant functional consequences.

  1. Design, synthesis and nootropic activity of new analogues of sunifiram and sapunifiram, two potent cognition-enhancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Elisabetta; Salvicchi, Alberto; Ghelardini, Carla; Manetti, Dina; Dei, Silvia; Guandalini, Luca; Martelli, Cecilia; Melchiorre, Michele; Cellai, Cristina; Scapecchi, Serena; Teodori, Elisabetta; Romanelli, Maria Novella

    2009-11-01

    A series of amides and sulfonamides, structurally related to DM235 (sunifiram) and MN19 (sapunifiram), derived by ring expansion or contraction, or by inversion of the exocyclic amide function, have been synthesized and tested for cognition-enhancing activity in the mouse passive-avoidance test. Some of the compounds display good antiamnesic and procognitive activity, with higher potency than piracetam, and with a potency similar to the parent compounds.

  2. Changes in Sea Salt Emissions Enhance ENSO Variability

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Yang; Russell, Lynn M.; Lou, Sijia; Lamjiri, Maryam A.; Liu, Ying; Singh, Balwinder; Ghan, Steven J.

    2016-11-15

    Two 150-year pre-industrial simulations with and without interactive sea salt emissions from the Community Earth System Model (CESM) are performed to quantify the interactions between sea salt emissions and El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Variations in sea salt emissions over the tropical Pacific Ocean are affected by changing wind speed associated with ENSO variability. ENSO-induced interannual variations in sea salt emissions result in decreasing (increasing) aerosol optical depth (AOD) by 0.03 over the equatorial central-eastern (western) Pacific Ocean during El Niño events compared to those during La Niña events. These changes in AOD further increase (decrease) radiative fluxes into the atmosphere by +0.2 W m-2 (-0.4 W m-2) over the tropical eastern (western) Pacific. Thereby, sea surface temperature increases (decreases) by 0.2–0.4 K over the tropical eastern (western) Pacific Ocean during El Niño compared to La Niña events and enhances ENSO variability by 10%. The increase in ENSO amplitude is a result of systematic heating (cooling) during the warm (cold) phase, of ENSO in the eastern Pacific. Interannual variations in sea salt emissions then produce the anomalous ascent (subsidence) over the equatorial eastern (western) Pacific between El Niño and La Niña events, which is a result of heating anomalies. Due to variations in sea salt emissions, the convective precipitation is enhanced by 0.6–1.2 mm day-1 over the tropical central-eastern Pacific Ocean and weakened by 0.9–1.5 mm day-1 over the Maritime Continent during El Niño compared to La Niña events, enhancing the precipitation variability over the tropical Pacific.

  3. Positive Affect Enhances the Association of Hypomanic Personality and Cognitive Flexibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fulford, Daniel; Feldman, Greg; Tabak, Benjamin A; McGillicuddy, Morgan; Johnson, Sheri L

    2013-03-01

    Several lines of research have suggested a link between mania and creativity, The goal of the present study was to test whether positive affect moderated the relationship between risk for mania (assessed with the Hypomanic Personality Scale [HPS]) and a variable postulated to be a cognitive component of creativity: cognitive flexibility. Fifty-three undergraduate students were randomly assigned to either a neutral or positive mood induction condition. They then completed the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (DKEFS) Sorting Test as a measure of cognitive flexibility. Consistent with our hypothesis, higher HPS scores were associated with greater cognitive flexibility among participants in the positive mood induction condition. Covariate analyses revealed that results were not confounded by verbal intelligence or the presence of current depression symptoms. Our findings suggest a mood-dependent link between hypomanic personality and one potential component of creative cognition.

  4. Cohort changes in cognitive function among Danish centenarians. A comparative study of 2 birth cohorts born in 1895 and 1905

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Engberg, Henriette; Christensen, Kaare; Andersen-Ranberg, Karen;

    2008-01-01

    cohort and worse cognitive performance for the centenarians in the 1905 group living in nursing homes compared to the nursing home dwellers in the 1895 cohort. CONCLUSION: The increasing number of centenarians may not entail larger proportions of cognitively impaired individuals in this extreme age group.......BACKGROUND/AIM: The objective was to examine cohort changes in cognitive function in 2 cohorts of centenarians born 10 years apart. METHODS: The Longitudinal Study of Danish Centenarians comprises all Danes reaching the age of 100 in the period April 1, 1995 through May 31, 1996. A total of 207 out......-Mental State Examination. RESULTS: There were no significant differences in cognitive score between the two centenarian birth cohorts. However, modest tendencies were seen towards better cognitive functioning for the centenarians in the 1905 cohort living at home compared to the home-dwelling ones in the 1895...

  5. Cognitive-Enhancing Effects of Polygalasaponin Hydrolysate in Aβ25–35-Induced Amnesic Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shu ping Xu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Polygalasaponins are the major active constituents of Polygala tenuifolia exhibiting antiamnesic activity, but their applications are limited due to their toxicities. Evidence showed that the toxicities can be attenuated by hydrolysis. Herein, effects of a hydrolysate of polygalasaponins (HPS on cognitive impairment induced by Aβ25−35 were assessed by Morris water maze and step-through passive avoidance tests. The impaired spatial reference memory was improved by HPS (50 and 100 mg/kg. In the acquisition trial of step-through test, HPS (50 and 100 mg/kg increased the latency into the dark chamber and decreased the error frequency significantly (<.05. However, no significant change was observed during the retention trial. Additionally, HPS increased the corresponding SOD activities (62.34%, 22.09% and decreased MDA levels (28.21%, 32.35% in both cortex and hippocampus as compared to model animals. These results show that HPS may be a useful treatment against amnesia probably via its antioxidant properties.

  6. Why is Cognitive Enhancement Deemed Unacceptable? The Role of Fairness, Deservingness, and Hollow Achievements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faber, Nadira S.; Savulescu, Julian; Douglas, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    We ask why pharmacological cognitive enhancement (PCE) is generally deemed morally unacceptable by lay people. Our approach to this question has two core elements. First, we employ an interdisciplinary perspective, using philosophical rationales as base for generating psychological models. Second, by testing these models we investigate how different normative judgments on PCE are related to each other. Based on an analysis of the relevant philosophical literature, we derive two psychological models that can potentially explain the judgment that PCE is unacceptable: the “Unfairness-Undeservingness Model” and the “Hollowness-Undeservingness Model.” The Unfairness-Undeservingness Model holds that people judge PCE to be unacceptable because they take it to produce unfairness and to undermine the degree to which PCE-users deserve reward. The Hollowness-Undeservingness Model assumes that people judge PCE to be unacceptable because they find achievements realized while using PCE hollow and undeserved. We empirically test both models against each other using a regression-based approach. When trying to predict judgments regarding the unacceptability of PCE using judgments regarding unfairness, hollowness, and undeservingness, we found that unfairness judgments were the only significant predictor of the perceived unacceptability of PCE, explaining about 36% of variance. As neither hollowness nor undeservingness had explanatory power above and beyond unfairness, the Unfairness-Undeservingness Model proved superior to the Hollowness-Undeservingness Model. This finding also has implications for the Unfairness-Undeservingness Model itself: either a more parsimonious single-factor “Fairness Model” should replace the Unfairness-Undeservingness-Model or fairness fully mediates the relationship between undeservingness and unacceptability. Both explanations imply that participants deemed PCE unacceptable because they judged it to be unfair. We conclude that concerns about

  7. The Spiral and the Lattice: Changes in Cognitive Learning Theory with Implications for Art Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efland, Arthur D.

    1995-01-01

    Contrasts recent views of learning and cognition with cognitive learning theories of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Maintains that Jerome Bruner's spiral curriculum approach, still valuable, is not sufficient to explain cognitive development. Proposes a lattice-like cognitive development structure, inviting differing paths of exploration. (CFR)

  8. Functional and cognitive changes in community-dwelling elderly: Longitudinal study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina S. Figueiredo

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The relationship between aging and increased life expectancy in the overall population likely contributes to a higher frequency rate and incidence of illnesses and functional disabilities. Physical dependence and cognitive impairment might hinder the performance of activities and result in an overload of care duties for the patient's family and the healthcare system. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to compare the functional and cognitive changes exhibited by the elderly over a 6-month period. METHOD: This longitudinal and observational study was conducted in a sample of 167 elderly people, who were selected from the database of the Network of Studies on Frailty in Brazilian Elderly, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais - UFMG. The participants submitted to the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE, Katz Index, Lawton and Brody's scale and responded to items on Advanced Activities of Daily Living (AADLs. We analyzed the data using multivariate regression models. RESULTS: The participants' functional capacity exhibited reduced performance of specific instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs, p=0.002, and basic activities of daily living (BADLs, p=0.038. Living alone (odds ratio (OR, 2.53; 95% confidence interval (CI, 1.09-5.87 and work status (OR, 2.52; 95% CI, 1.18-5.41 were associated with changes in the IADLs. The scores in the AADL scale (p=0.163 and MMSE (p=0.059 did not exhibit any significant difference during the study period. The participants with better cognitive function were more independent in their performance of AADLs and IADLs. CONCLUSION: The results depict specific patterns of loss and stability of functional capacity in community-dwelling elderly.

  9. Brain training with non-action video games enhances aspects of cognition in older adults: a randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soledad eBallesteros

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Age-related cognitive and brain declines can result in functional deterioration in many cognitive domains, dependency, and dementia. A major goal of aging research is to investigate methods that help to maintain brain health, cognition, independent living and wellbeing in older adults. This randomized controlled study investigated the effects of 20 1-hr non-action video game training sessions with games selected from a commercially available package (Lumosity on a series of age-declined cognitive functions and subjective wellbeing. Two groups of healthy older adults participated in the study, the experimental group who received the training and the control group who attended three meetings with the research team along the study. Groups were similar at baseline on demographics, vocabulary, global cognition, and depression status. All participants were assessed individually before and after the intervention, or a similar period of time, using neuropsychological tests and laboratory tasks to investigate possible transfer effects. The results showed significant improvements in the trained group, and no variation in the control group, in processing speed (choice reaction time, attention (reduction of distraction and increase of alertness, immediate and delayed visual recognition memory, as well as a trend to improve in Affection and Assertivity, two dimensions of the Wellbeing Scale. Visuospatial working memory (WM and executive control (shifting strategy did not improve. Overall, the current results support the idea that training healthy older adults with non-action video games will enhance some cognitive abilities but not others. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT02007616http://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT02007616

  10. A-Book: A Feedback-Based Adaptive System to Enhance Meta-Cognitive Skills during Reading

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerra, Ernesto; Mellado, Guido

    2017-01-01

    In the digital era, tech devices (hardware and software) are increasingly within hand’s reach. Yet, implementing information and communication technologies for educational contexts that have robust and long-lasting effects on student learning outcomes is still a challenge. We propose that any such system must a) be theoretically motivated and designed to tackle specific cognitive skills (e.g., inference making) supporting a given cognitive task (e.g., reading comprehension) and b) must be able to identify and adapt to the user’s profile. In the present study, we implemented a feedback-based adaptive system called A-book (assisted-reading book) and tested it in a sample of 4th, 5th, and 6th graders. To assess our hypotheses, we contrasted three experimental assisted-reading conditions; one that supported meta-cognitive skills and adapted to the user profile (adaptive condition), one that supported meta-cognitive skills but did not adapt to the user profile (training condition) and a control condition. The results provide initial support for our proposal; participants in the adaptive condition improved their accuracy scores on inference making questions over time, outperforming both the training and control groups. There was no evidence, however, of significant improvements on other tested meta-cognitive skills (i.e., text structure knowledge, comprehension monitoring). We discussed the practical implications of using the A-book for the enhancement of meta-cognitive skills in school contexts, as well as its current limitations and future developments that could improve the system. PMID:28348523

  11. Dietary quality may enhance survival related to cognitive impairment in Taiwanese elderly

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosalind Chen

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Impaired cognition increases mortality in the aged. It is unclear how dietary quality might affect this relationship.To examine how dietary diversity and cognition might interact to determine survival.In a Nutrition and Health Survey in Taiwan (NAHSIT 1999–2000, 1,839 representative elderly were followed for mortality up to 10 years. The dietary quality measure was a dietary diversity score (DDS, range: 0–6 to present six food groups (dairy, meat, rice and grains, fruit, vegetable,fat and oil derived from a 24-h dietary recall. Cognitive function was evaluated by the validated Short Portable Mental Status Questionnaire (SPMSQ.Those with cognitive impairment (SPMSQ ≥ 3 errors had 2.56 (95% confidence intervals (CI, 1.99–3.28 times the all-cause-mortality risk of those with intact cognition. After control for potential confounders, the adjusted hazard ratio (HR remained significant (1.46, 95% CI: 1.06–2.02. Significant interactions for DDS and cognition were found (p<0.001. Jointly, compared to normal-SPMSQ-highest DDS, the greatest HR is where impaired cognition is combined with the lowest DDS (HR 2.24, 95% CI: 1.19–4.24. Increased DDS was associated with improvement in survival that is especially evident in those with 1–2 errors where the greatest HR reduction was found, and for fruit. Attributability for mortality amounted to 18% for impaired cognition and 33% for least diverse diet.Dietary diversity may improve survival in relation to impaired cognitive function.

  12. Enhanced warming of the Northwest Atlantic Ocean under climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saba, Vincent S.; Griffies, Stephen M.; Anderson, Whit G.; Winton, Michael; Alexander, Michael A.; Delworth, Thomas L.; Hare, Jonathan A.; Harrison, Matthew J.; Rosati, Anthony; Vecchi, Gabriel A.; Zhang, Rong

    2016-01-01

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) fifth assessment of projected global and regional ocean temperature change is based on global climate models that have coarse (˜100 km) ocean and atmosphere resolutions. In the Northwest Atlantic, the ensemble of global climate models has a warm bias in sea surface temperature due to a misrepresentation of the Gulf Stream position; thus, existing climate change projections are based on unrealistic regional ocean circulation. Here we compare simulations and an atmospheric CO2 doubling response from four global climate models of varying ocean and atmosphere resolution. We find that the highest resolution climate model (˜10 km ocean, ˜50 km atmosphere) resolves Northwest Atlantic circulation and water mass distribution most accurately. The CO2 doubling response from this model shows that upper-ocean (0-300 m) temperature in the Northwest Atlantic Shelf warms at a rate nearly twice as fast as the coarser models and nearly three times faster than the global average. This enhanced warming is accompanied by an increase in salinity due to a change in water mass distribution that is related to a retreat of the Labrador Current and a northerly shift of the Gulf Stream. Both observations and the climate model demonstrate a robust relationship between a weakening Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) and an increase in the proportion of Warm-Temperate Slope Water entering the Northwest Atlantic Shelf. Therefore, prior climate change projections for the Northwest Atlantic may be far too conservative. These results point to the need to improve simulations of basin and regional-scale ocean circulation.

  13. Breakfast is associated with enhanced cognitive function in schoolchildren. An internet based study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wesnes, Keith A; Pincock, Claire; Scholey, Andrew

    2012-12-01

    In this study, 1386 children aged between 6 and 16years, from schools throughout the UK, logged on to a web site before lunch during Farmhouse Breakfast Week 2004. They answered a number of questions concerning their food and drink consumption that day and performed cognitive tests of attention and episodic memory. Children who had had breakfast showed superior performance on tests of attention and memory, confirming a previous laboratory based study using the same cognitive tests. This study adds weight to the growing body of literature indicating that breakfast plays a positive role in maintaining cognitive function during the morning.

  14. Changes in social adjustment with cognitive processing therapy: effects of treatment and association with PTSD symptom change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monson, Candice M; Macdonald, Alexandra; Vorstenbosch, Valerie; Shnaider, Philippe; Goldstein, Elizabeth S R; Ferrier-Auerbach, Amanda G; Mocciola, Katharine E

    2012-10-01

    The current study sought to determine if different spheres of social adjustment, social and leisure, family, and work and income improved immediately following a course of cognitive processing therapy (CPT) when compared with those on a waiting list in a sample of 46 U.S. veterans diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We also sought to determine whether changes in different PTSD symptom clusters were associated with changes in these spheres of social adjustment. Overall social adjustment, extended family relationships, and housework completion significantly improved in the CPT versus waiting-list condition, η(2) = .08 to .11. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses revealed that improvements in total clinician-rated PTSD symptoms were associated with improvements in overall social and housework adjustment. When changes in reexperiencing, avoidance, emotional numbing, and hyperarousal were all in the model accounting for changes in total social adjustment, improvements in emotional numbing symptoms were associated with improvements in overall social, extended family, and housework adjustment (β = .38 to .55). In addition, improvements in avoidance symptoms were associated with improvements in housework adjustment (β = .30), but associated with declines in extended family adjustment (β = -.34). Results suggest that it is important to consider the extent to which PTSD treatments effectively reduce specific types of symptoms, particularly emotional numbing and avoidance, to generally improve social adjustment.

  15. Correlation Between Brain Activation Changes and Cognitive Improvement Following Cognitive Remediation Therapy in Schizophrenia: An Activation Likelihood Estimation Meta-analysis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yan-Yan Wei; Ji-Jun Wang; Chao Yan; Zi-Qiang Li; Xiao Pan; Yi Cui; Tong Su

    2016-01-01

    Background:Several studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) have indicated that cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) might improve cognitive function by changing brain activations in patients with schizophrenia.However,the results were not consistent in these changed brain areas in different studies.The present activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analysis was conducted to investigate whether cognitive function change was accompanied by the brain activation changes,and where the main areas most related to these changes were in schizophrenia patients after CRT.Analyses of whole-brain studies and whole-brain + region of interest (ROI) studies were compared to explore the effect of the different methodologies on the results.Methods:A computerized systematic search was conducted to collect fMRI and PET studies on brain activation changes in schizophrenia patients from pre-to post-CRT.Nine studies using fMRI techniques were included in the meta-analysis.Ginger ALE 2.3.1 was used to perform meta-analysis across these imaging studies.Results:The main areas with increased brain activation were in frontal and parietal lobe,including left medial frontal gyrus,left inferior frontal gyrus,right middle frontal gyrus,right postcentral gyrus,and inferior parietal lobule in patients after CRT,yet no decreased brain activation was found.Although similar increased activation brain areas were identified in ALE with or without ROI studies,analysis including ROI studies had a higher ALE value.Conclusions:The current findings suggest that CRT might improve the cognition of schizophrenia patients by increasing activations of the frontal and parietal lobe.In addition,it might provide more evidence to confirm results by including ROI studies in ALE meta-analysis.

  16. Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Psychosis: Measuring Psychological Change Using Repertory Grids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randal, Chloe; Bucci, Sandra; Morera, Tirma; Barrett, Moya; Pratt, Daniel

    2016-11-01

    There are an increasing, but limited, number of studies investigating the benefits of mindfulness interventions for people experiencing psychosis. To our knowledge, changes following mindfulness for psychosis have not yet been explored from a personal construct perspective. This study had two main aims: (i) to explore changes in the way a person construes their self, others and their experience of psychosis following a Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) group; and (ii) to replicate the findings of other studies exploring the feasibility and potential benefits of MBCT for psychosis. Sixteen participants, with experience of psychosis, completed an 8-week MBCT group. Participants completed pre-group and post-group assessments including a repertory grid, in addition to a range of outcome measures. There was some evidence of changes in construing following MBCT, with changes in the way participants viewed their ideal self and recovered self, and an indication of increased self-understanding. Improvements were found in participants' self-reported ability to act with awareness and in recovery. This study demonstrates the feasibility and potential benefits of MBCT groups for people experiencing psychosis. Furthermore, it provides some evidence of changes in construal following MBCT that warrant further exploration. Large-scale controlled trials of MBCT for psychosis are needed, as well as studies investigating the mechanisms of change. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  17. Cognitive and psychological science insights to improve climate change data visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harold, Jordan; Lorenzoni, Irene; Shipley, Thomas F.; Coventry, Kenny R.

    2016-12-01

    Visualization of climate data plays an integral role in the communication of climate change findings to both expert and non-expert audiences. The cognitive and psychological sciences can provide valuable insights into how to improve visualization of climate data based on knowledge of how the human brain processes visual and linguistic information. We review four key research areas to demonstrate their potential to make data more accessible to diverse audiences: directing visual attention, visual complexity, making inferences from visuals, and the mapping between visuals and language. We present evidence-informed guidelines to help climate scientists increase the accessibility of graphics to non-experts, and illustrate how the guidelines can work in practice in the context of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change graphics.

  18. The temporal limits of cognitive change from music therapy in elderly persons with dementia or dementia-like cognitive impairment: a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruer, Robert A; Spitznagel, Edward; Cloninger, C Robert

    2007-01-01

    This study explored the temporal limits of cognitive change from an intention-to-treat with group music therapy. Elderly cognitively-impaired psychiatric inpatients (N = 28) participated in an 8-week randomized control trial using a crossover design. Once a week, subjects were assigned either to music therapy or a control treatment (age-appropriate movie). The Mini-Mental State Exam (MMSE) assessed cognition 3 times every week: prior to the intervention, immediately after the mid-afternoon intervention, and the morning following the intervention. Comparisons between conditions included weekly changes in individual subject's MMSE scores from weekly baseline to both the 2 follow-ups and the following week's baseline. Significant next morning improvements in MMSE scores were found within intent-to-treat music therapy cases as compared to control cases. While all the subjects in this study were cognitively impaired, only 17 had been formally diagnosed with dementia. Based on a Cochrane Collaboration suggestion that music therapy studies within geriatric populations look specifically at the treatment of dementia, a final generalized estimating equation model considered only the change within the 17 dementia-diagnosed subjects. Immediately after the intervention, MMSE scores in the dementia-diagnosed subjects assigned to music therapy improved 2.00 points compared to the dementia-diagnosed subjects assigned to the control group (Z = 1.99, p dementia-diagnosed subjects assigned to music therapy showed average improvements of 3.69 points compared to the control subjects (Z = 3.38, p music therapy intervention facilitated by a trained and accredited music therapist significantly improved next-morning cognitive functioning among dementia patients. With many music therapists working in geriatric settings, more research is justified to both replicate this study and provide better guidance into the effective use of music therapy in the treatment of dementia.

  19. Subjective sleep quality and daytime sleepiness in late midlife and their association with age-related changes in cognition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Waller, Katja Linda; Mortensen, Erik Lykke; Avlund, Kirsten

    2016-01-01

    UNLABELLED: In an increasingly aged population, sleep disturbances and neurodegenerative disorders have become a major public health concern. Poor sleep quality and cognitive changes are complex health problems in aging populations that are likely to be associated with increased frailty, morbidity......) or cognitively impaired (N = 92). METHODS: The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and Epworth Sleepiness Scale measured subjective sleep quality and daytime sleepiness, respectively. Depressive symptoms were determined using Beck's Depression Inventory (BDI-II). A neuropsychological battery was administered...

  20. Using Classroom Assessment and Cognitive Scaffolding to Enhance the Power of Small-Group Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, James L.; Robinson, Pamela

    2014-01-01

    The authors describe several types of classroom assessment techniques (CATs) and cognitive scaffolding procedures that they have developed over the years. They then bring the procedures together in a sample lecture/group learning class presentation.

  1. Do English Listening Outcome and Cognitive Load Change for Different Media Delivery Modes in U-Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chi-Cheng; Lei, Hao; Tseng, Ju-Shih

    2014-01-01

    Although ubiquitous learning enhances students' access to learning materials, it is crucial to find out which media delivery modes produce the best results for English listening comprehension. The present study examined the effect of media delivery mode (sound and text vs. sound) on English listening comprehension and cognitive load. Participants…

  2. Positive Affect Enhances the Association of Hypomanic Personality and Cognitive Flexibility

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    Several lines of research have suggested a link between mania and creativity, The goal of the present study was to test whether positive affect moderated the relationship between risk for mania (assessed with the Hypomanic Personality Scale [HPS]) and a variable postulated to be a cognitive component of creativity: cognitive flexibility. Fifty-three undergraduate students were randomly assigned to either a neutral or positive mood induction condition. They then completed the Delis-Kaplan Exec...

  3. A Randomized Clinical Trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy for Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-10-01

    cognitive assessments were greatly expanded. Social cognition was assessed using the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test ( MSCEIT ...of 100 (15) based on a large normative sample. Previous research has documented the reliability and validity of the MSCEIT in healthy (Mayer, Salovey...Caruso, & Sitarenios, 2003) and psychiatric samples (Eack et al., 2010a). All components of the MSCEIT were utilized in this research, with the

  4. DHA dietary supplementation enhances the effects of exercise on synaptic plasticity and cognition

    OpenAIRE

    Wu, Aiguo; Ying, Zhe; Gomez-Pinilla, Fernando

    2008-01-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids (i.e., docosahexaenoic acid; DHA), similar to exercise, improve cognitive function, promote neuroplasticity, and protect against neurological lesion. In this study, we investigated a possible synergistic action between DHA dietary supplementation and voluntary exercise on modulating synaptic plasticity and cognition. Rats received DHA dietary supplementation (1.25% DHA) with or without voluntary exercise for 12 days. We found that the DHA-enriched diet significantly increa...

  5. Delayed voluntary exercise does not enhance cognitive performance after hippocampal injury: an investigation of differentially distributed exercise protocols

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wogensen, Elise; Gram, Marie Gajhede; Sommer, Jens Bak; Vilsen, Christina Rytter; Mogensen, Jesper; Malá, Hana

    2016-01-01

    Voluntary exercise has previously been shown to enhance cognitive recovery after acquired brain injury (ABI). The present study evaluated effects of two differentially distributed protocols of delayed, voluntary exercise on cognitive recovery using an allocentric place learning task in an 8-arm radial maze. Fifty-four Wistar rats were subjected to either bilateral transection of the fimbria-fornix (FF) or to sham surgery. Twenty-one days postinjury, the animals started exercising in running wheels either for 14 consecutive days (FF/exercise daily [ExD], sham/ExD) or every other day for 14 days (FF/exercise every second day [ExS], sham/ExS). Additional groups were given no exercise treatment (FF/not exercise [NE], sham/NE). Regardless of how exercise was distributed, we found no cognitively enhancing effects of exercise in the brain injured animals. Design and protocol factors possibly affecting the efficacy of post-ABI exercise are discussed. PMID:27807517

  6. Establishing Reliable Cognitive Change in Children with Epilepsy: The Procedures and Results for a Sample with Epilepsy

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Iterson, Loretta; Augustijn, Paul B.; de Jong, Peter F.; van der Leij, Aryan

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate reliable cognitive change in epilepsy by developing computational procedures to determine reliable change index scores (RCIs) for the Dutch Wechsler Intelligence Scales for Children. First, RCIs were calculated based on stability coefficients from a reference sample. Then, these RCIs were applied to a…

  7. Establishing reliable cognitive change in children with epilepsy: The procedures and results for a sample with epilepsy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Iterson, L.; Augustijn, P.B.; de Jong, P.F.; van der Leij, A.

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate reliable cognitive change in epilepsy by developing computational procedures to determine reliable change index scores (RCIs) for the Dutch Wechsler Intelligence Scales for Children. First, RCIs were calculated based on stability coefficients from a referenc

  8. Speaking Two Languages Enhances an Auditory but Not a Visual Neural Marker of Cognitive Inhibition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mercedes Fernandez

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of the present study was to replicate and extend our original findings of enhanced neural inhibitory control in bilinguals. We compared English monolinguals to Spanish/English bilinguals on a non-linguistic, auditory Go/NoGo task while recording event-related brain potentials. New to this study was the visual Go/NoGo task, which we included to investigate whether enhanced neural inhibition in bilinguals extends from the auditory to the visual modality. Results confirmed our original findings and revealed greater inhibition in bilinguals compared to monolinguals. As predicted, compared to monolinguals, bilinguals showed increased N2 amplitude during the auditory NoGo trials, which required inhibitory control, but no differences during the Go trials, which required a behavioral response and no inhibition. Interestingly, during the visual Go/NoGo task, event related brain potentials did not distinguish the two groups, and behavioral responses were similar between the groups regardless of task modality. Thus, only auditory trials that required inhibitory control revealed between-group differences indicative of greater neural inhibition in bilinguals. These results show that experience-dependent neural changes associated with bilingualism are specific to the auditory modality and that the N2 event-related brain potential is a sensitive marker of this plasticity.

  9. Changes in running pattern due to fatigue and cognitive load in orienteering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millet, Guillaume Y; Divert, Caroline; Banizette, Marion; Morin, Jean-Benoit

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the influence of fatigue on running biomechanics in normal running, in normal running with a cognitive task, and in running while map reading. Nineteen international and less experienced orienteers performed a fatiguing running exercise of duration and intensity similar to a classic distance orienteering race on an instrumented treadmill while performing mental arithmetic, an orienteering simulation, and control running at regular intervals. Two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance did not reveal any significant difference between mental arithmetic and control running for any of the kinematic and kinetic parameters analysed eight times over the fatiguing protocol. However, these parameters were systematically different between the orienteering simulation and the other two conditions (mental arithmetic and control running). The adaptations in orienteering simulation running were significantly more pronounced in the elite group when step frequency, peak vertical ground reaction force, vertical stiffness, and maximal downward displacement of the centre of mass during contact were considered. The effects of fatigue on running biomechanics depended on whether the orienteers read their map or ran normally. It is concluded that adding a cognitive load does not modify running patterns. Therefore, all changes in running pattern observed during the orienteering simulation, particularly in elite orienteers, are the result of adaptations to enable efficient map reading and/or potentially prevent injuries. Finally, running patterns are not affected to the same extent by fatigue when a map reading task is added.

  10. Effects of Cognitive Conflict Instructional Strategy on Students’ Conceptual Change in Temperature and Heat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. C. Madu

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to investigate the efficacy of cognitive-conflict-based physics instruction over the traditionally designed physics instruction on students’ conceptual change in heat and temperature. The subjects were 249 senior secondary II students from 2 schools purposively sampled from 12 secondary schools. The 2 schools sampled had well-equipped laboratory, experienced physics teachers, and two intact classes. One of the intact classes in each school was assigned to control group. In one school, there were 70 subjects for experimental group and 60 for control group, while in the other school, there were 60 for experimental group and 59 for control group. Both groups were taught by the same teacher, and this lasted for 6 weeks of intensive treatment. The experimental group received cognitive-conflict-based instruction, while the control group received traditionally designed physics instruction. The instrument for obtaining the data was thermal concept evaluation (TCE. Students in both groups were pretested using TCE to establish their level of initial understanding of heat and temperature. At the end of the treatment, the same test was administered as posttest. The data generated from the TCE were analyzed using frequency and chi-square statistics, indicating that the level of understanding of heat and temperature was significantly dependent on the treatment. Based on the findings, some recommendations were made.

  11. Artificial cognitive memory—changing from density driven to functionality driven

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, L. P.; Yi, K. J.; Ramanathan, K.; Zhao, R.; Ning, N.; Ding, D.; Chong, T. C.

    2011-03-01

    Increasing density based on bit size reduction is currently a main driving force for the development of data storage technologies. However, it is expected that all of the current available storage technologies might approach their physical limits in around 15 to 20 years due to miniaturization. To further advance the storage technologies, it is required to explore a new development trend that is different from density driven. One possible direction is to derive insights from biological counterparts. Unlike physical memories that have a single function of data storage, human memory is versatile. It contributes to functions of data storage, information processing, and most importantly, cognitive functions such as adaptation, learning, perception, knowledge generation, etc. In this paper, a brief review of current data storage technologies are presented, followed by discussions of future storage technology development trend. We expect that the driving force will evolve from density to functionality, and new memory modules associated with additional functions other than only data storage will appear. As an initial step toward building a future generation memory technology, we propose Artificial Cognitive Memory (ACM), a memory based intelligent system. We also present the characteristics of ACM, new technologies that can be used to develop ACM components such as bioinspired element cells (silicon, memristor, phase change, etc.), and possible methodologies to construct a biologically inspired hierarchical system.

  12. In Your Face: Risk of Punishment Enhances Cognitive Control and Error-Related Activity in the Corrugator Supercilii Muscle.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Björn R Lindström

    Full Text Available Cognitive control is needed when mistakes have consequences, especially when such consequences are potentially harmful. However, little is known about how the aversive consequences of deficient control affect behavior. To address this issue, participants performed a two-choice response time task where error commissions were expected to be punished by electric shocks during certain blocks. By manipulating (1 the perceived punishment risk (no, low, high associated with error commissions, and (2 response conflict (low, high, we showed that motivation to avoid punishment enhanced performance during high response conflict. As a novel index of the processes enabling successful cognitive control under threat, we explored electromyographic activity in the corrugator supercilii (cEMG muscle of the upper face. The corrugator supercilii is partially controlled by the anterior midcingulate cortex (aMCC which is sensitive to negative affect, pain and cognitive control. As hypothesized, the cEMG exhibited several key similarities with the core temporal and functional characteristics of the Error-Related Negativity (ERN ERP component, the hallmark index of cognitive control elicited by performance errors, and which has been linked to the aMCC. The cEMG was amplified within 100 ms of error commissions (the same time-window as the ERN, particularly during the high punishment risk condition where errors would be most aversive. Furthermore, similar to the ERN, the magnitude of error cEMG predicted post-error response time slowing. Our results suggest that cEMG activity can serve as an index of avoidance motivated control, which is instrumental to adaptive cognitive control when consequences are potentially harmful.

  13. In Your Face: Risk of Punishment Enhances Cognitive Control and Error-Related Activity in the Corrugator Supercilii Muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindström, Björn R; Mattsson-Mårn, Isak Berglund; Golkar, Armita; Olsson, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Cognitive control is needed when mistakes have consequences, especially when such consequences are potentially harmful. However, little is known about how the aversive consequences of deficient control affect behavior. To address this issue, participants performed a two-choice response time task where error commissions were expected to be punished by electric shocks during certain blocks. By manipulating (1) the perceived punishment risk (no, low, high) associated with error commissions, and (2) response conflict (low, high), we showed that motivation to avoid punishment enhanced performance during high response conflict. As a novel index of the processes enabling successful cognitive control under threat, we explored electromyographic activity in the corrugator supercilii (cEMG) muscle of the upper face. The corrugator supercilii is partially controlled by the anterior midcingulate cortex (aMCC) which is sensitive to negative affect, pain and cognitive control. As hypothesized, the cEMG exhibited several key similarities with the core temporal and functional characteristics of the Error-Related Negativity (ERN) ERP component, the hallmark index of cognitive control elicited by performance errors, and which has been linked to the aMCC. The cEMG was amplified within 100 ms of error commissions (the same time-window as the ERN), particularly during the high punishment risk condition where errors would be most aversive. Furthermore, similar to the ERN, the magnitude of error cEMG predicted post-error response time slowing. Our results suggest that cEMG activity can serve as an index of avoidance motivated control, which is instrumental to adaptive cognitive control when consequences are potentially harmful.

  14. Impact of Genetic Testing and Family Health History Based Risk Counseling on Behavior Change and Cognitive Precursors for Type 2 Diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, R Ryanne; Myers, Rachel A; Hauser, Elizabeth R; Vorderstrasse, Allison; Cho, Alex; Ginsburg, Geoffrey S; Orlando, Lori A

    2017-02-01

    Family health history (FHH) in the context of risk assessment has been shown to positively impact risk perception and behavior change. The added value of genetic risk testing is less certain. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) FHH and genetic risk counseling on behavior and its cognitive precursors. Subjects were non-diabetic patients randomized to counseling that included FHH +/- T2D genetic testing. Measurements included weight, BMI, fasting glucose at baseline and 12 months and behavioral and cognitive precursor (T2D risk perception and control over disease development) surveys at baseline, 3, and 12 months. 391 subjects enrolled of which 312 completed the study. Behavioral and clinical outcomes did not differ across FHH or genetic risk but cognitive precursors did. Higher FHH risk was associated with a stronger perceived T2D risk (pKendall < 0.001) and with a perception of "serious" risk (pKendall < 0.001). Genetic risk did not influence risk perception, but was correlated with an increase in perception of "serious" risk for moderate (pKendall = 0.04) and average FHH risk subjects (pKendall = 0.01), though not for the high FHH risk group. Perceived control over T2D risk was high and not affected by FHH or genetic risk. FHH appears to have a strong impact on cognitive precursors of behavior change, suggesting it could be leveraged to enhance risk counseling, particularly when lifestyle change is desirable. Genetic risk was able to alter perceptions about the seriousness of T2D risk in those with moderate and average FHH risk, suggesting that FHH could be used to selectively identify individuals who may benefit from genetic risk testing.

  15. The influence of hormone replacement therapy on the aging-related change in cognitive performance. Analysis based on a Danish cohort study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Løkkegaard, E; Pedersen, A T; Laursen, P;

    2002-01-01

    A maintenance and/or improvement of cognitive performance with postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is biological plausible. The objectives of this study were to analyze the impact of HRT on aging-related changes in cognitive performances, and to assess whether women who choose HRT have...... better cognitive performance prior to HRT....

  16. Changes in Neural Activity Underlying Working Memory after Computerized Cognitive Training in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tusch, Erich S; Alperin, Brittany R; Ryan, Eliza; Holcomb, Phillip J; Mohammed, Abdul H; Daffner, Kirk R

    2016-01-01

    Computerized cognitive training (CCT) may counter the impact of aging on cognition, but both the efficacy and neurocognitive mechanisms underlying CCT remain controversial. In this study, 35 older individuals were randomly assigned to Cogmed adaptive working memory (WM) CCT or an active control CCT, featuring five weeks of five ∼40 min sessions per week. Before and after the 5-week intervention, event-related potentials were measured while subjects completed a visual n-back task with three levels of demand (0-back, 1-back, 2-back). The anterior P3a served as an index of directing attention and the posterior P3b as an index of categorization/WM updating. We hypothesized that adaptive CCT would be associated with decreased P3 amplitude at low WM demand and increased P3 amplitude at high WM demand. The adaptive CCT group exhibited a training-related increase in the amplitude of the anterior P3a and posterior P3b in response to target stimuli across n-back tasks, while subjects in the active control CCT group demonstrated a post-training decrease in the anterior P3a. Performance did not differ between groups or sessions. Larger overall P3 amplitudes were strongly associated with better task performance. Increased post-CCT P3 amplitude correlated with improved task performance; this relationship was especially robust at high task load. Our findings suggest that adaptive WM training was associated with increased orienting of attention, as indexed by the P3a, and the enhancement of categorization/WM updating processes, as indexed by the P3b. Increased P3 amplitude was linked to improved performance; however. there was no direct association between adaptive training and improved performance.

  17. Exercise-enhanced neuroplasticity targeting motor and cognitive circuitry in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petzinger, Giselle M; Fisher, Beth E; McEwen, Sarah; Beeler, Jeff A; Walsh, John P; Jakowec, Michael W

    2013-07-01

    Exercise interventions in individuals with Parkinson's disease incorporate goal-based motor skill training to engage cognitive circuitry important in motor learning. With this exercise approach, physical therapy helps with learning through instruction and feedback (reinforcement) and encouragement to perform beyond self-perceived capability. Individuals with Parkinson's disease become more cognitively engaged with the practice and learning of movements and skills that were previously automatic and unconscious. Aerobic exercise, regarded as important for improvement of blood flow and facilitation of neuroplasticity in elderly people, might also have a role in improvement of behavioural function in individuals with Parkinson's disease. Exercises that incorporate goal-based training and aerobic activity have the potential to improve both cognitive and automatic components of motor control in individuals with mild to moderate disease through experience-dependent neuroplasticity. Basic research in animal models of Parkinson's disease is beginning to show exercise-induced neuroplastic effects at the level of synaptic connections and circuits.

  18. Data-Throughput Enhancement Using Data Mining-Informed Cognitive Radio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khashayar Kotobi

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available We propose the data mining-informed cognitive radio, which uses non-traditional data sources and data-mining techniques for decision making and improving the performance of a wireless network. To date, the application of information other than wireless channel data in cognitive radios has not been significantly studied. We use a novel dataset (Twitter traffic as an indicator of network load in a wireless channel. Using this dataset, we present and test a series of predictive algorithms that show an improvement in wireless channel utilization over traditional collision-detection algorithms. Our results demonstrate the viability of using these novel datasets to inform and create more efficient cognitive radio networks.

  19. COGNITIVE SCIENCE IMPLICATIONS FOR ENHANCING TRAINING EFFECTIVENESS IN A SERIOUS GAMING CONTEXT

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Greitzer, Frank L.; Kuchar, Olga A.; Huston, Kristy A.

    2007-08-01

    Serious games use entertainment principles, creativity, and technology to meet government or corporate training objectives, but these principles alone will not guarantee that the intended learning will occur. To be effective, serious games must incorporate sound cognitive, learning, and pedagogical principles into their design and structure. In this paper, we review cognitive principles that can be applied to improve the training effectiveness in serious games and we describe a process we used to design improvements for an existing game-based training application in the domain of cyber security education.

  20. Changes in Regional Cerebral Blood Flow with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in the Treatment of Panic Disorder

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Won, K. S.; Jun, S. K.; Kim, J. B.; Jang, E. J. [College of Medicine, Univ. of Kyemyoung, Taegu (Korea, Republic of)

    2003-07-01

    This study attempted to prospectively investigate changes in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) on SPECT and clinical response to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in patients with panic disorder with (PDA) and without (PD) agoraphobia. Using 99mTc-ECD brain SPECT, we assessed brain perfusion in 5 out patients at rest before and after CBT. The subjects received 12 weekly sessions of CBT. Subjects were assessed by Agoraphobic Cognitions Questionnaire, Body Sensations Questionnaire, Beck Anxiety Inventory, Anxiety Sensitivity Index, Beck Depression Inventory-II, Panic Disorder Severity Scale (PDSS) and clinical global improvement (CGI) scale measurement were used as outcome measures. Patients were considered responders to CBT if they are much or very much improved on CGI scale and have a PDSS score at least 30% below their baseline. The scans were statistically analyzed by using statistical parametric mapping (SPM99). The baseline scans were compared to the post-CBT scans by using the statistics option multi subject, different conditions. Of 5 subjects 4 were male, 3 diagnosed PDA, and 4 on anti-anxiety medication. All of the subjects were classified as CBT responders. Their mean pretreatment and posttreatment PDSS were 17.4 (SD=8.2) and 4.2 (SD=3.1), respectively. The results of SPM analysis showed a significant decrease in blood flow after CBT in the thalamus bilaterally and right middle frontal gyrus (Brodmann's area 6). All results were thresholded at an uncorrected p<0.001 (for voxel height) and a corrected p<0.04 (for spatial extent). These preliminary data suggest that SPM analysis of 99mTc-ECD brain SPECT can reveal the change of rCBF in patient with panic disorder before and after CBT and the CBT effect may be associated with limbic and thalamic networks. However this study was a short trial with small number of subjects. Further studies with larger patient cohorts are needed.

  1. Immunoendocrine alterations following Marine Corps Martial Arts training are associated with changes in moral cognitive processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siedlik, Jacob A; Deckert, Jake A; Clopton, Aaron W; Gigliotti, Nicole; Chan, Marcia A; Benedict, Stephen H; Herda, Trent J; Gallagher, Philip M; Vardiman, John P

    2016-02-01

    Combined physical and psychological stress events have been associated with exacerbated endocrine responses and increased alterations in immune cell trafficking when compared to exercise stress alone. Military training programs are rigorous in nature and often purposefully delivered in environments combining high levels of both physical and mental stress. The objective of this study was to assess physiological and cognitive changes following U.S. Marine Corps Martial Arts training. Seven active-duty, male Marines were observed during a typical Marine Corps Martial Arts training session. Immune parameters, including immunomodulatory cytokines, and hormone concentrations were determined from blood samples obtained at baseline, immediately post training (IP) and at 15min intervals post-training to 1h (R15, R30, R45, R60). Assessments of cognitive moral functioning (moral judgment and intent) were recorded at intervals during recovery. There were significant fluctuations in immunoendocrine parameters. Peak endocrine measures were observed within the IP-R15 time interval. Distributions of circulating immune cells were significantly altered with neutrophils and all lymphocyte subsets elevated at IP. IFN-γ and IL-17a exhibited small, non-significant, parallel increases over the recovery period. Moral functioning was informed by different social identities during the recovery resulting in changes in moral decision-making. These data demonstrate that the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program induces significant alterations in lymphocyte and leukocyte distributions, but does not shift the balance of Th1/Th2 cytokines or induce a systemic inflammatory response. The program does, however, induce alterations in moral decision-making ability associated with the observed endocrine responses, even suggesting a potential interaction between one's social identities and endocrine responses upon moral decision-making.

  2. CASE STUDY FOR ENHANCED ACCIDENT TOLERANCE DESIGN CHANGES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Prescott, Steven [Idaho National Laboratory; Smith, Curtis [Idaho National Laboratory; Koonce, Tony

    2014-09-01

    The ability to better characterize and quantify safety margin is important to improved decision making about Light Water Reactor (LWR) design, operation, and plant life extension. A systematic approach to characterization of safety margins and the subsequent margin management options represents a vital input to the licensee and regulatory analysis and decision making that will be involved. In addition, as research and development in the LWR Sustainability (LWRS) Program and other collaborative efforts yield new data, sensors, and improved scientific understanding of physical processes that govern the aging and degradation of plant SSCs needs and opportunities to better optimize plant safety and performance will become known. To support decision making related to economics, readability, and safety, the Risk Informed Safety Margin Characterization (RISMC) Pathway provides methods and tools that enable mitigation options known as risk informed margins management (RIMM) strategies. The methods and tools provided by RISMC are essential to a comprehensive and integrated RIMM approach that supports effective preservation of margin for both active and passive SSCs. In this report, we discuss the methods and technologies behind RIMM for an application focused on enhanced accident tolerance design changes for a representative nuclear power plant. We look at a variety of potential plant modifications and evaluate, using the RISMC approach, the implications to safety margin for the various strategies.

  3. Six months of dance intervention enhances postural, sensorimotor, and cognitive performance in elderly without affecting cardio-respiratory functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan-ChristophKattenstroth

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available During aging, sensorimotor, cognitive and physical performance decline, but can improve by training and exercise indicating that age-related changes are treatable. Dancing is increasingly used as an intervention because it combines many diverse features making it a promising neuroplasticity-inducing tool. We here investigated the effects of a 6-months dance class (1 h/week on a group of healthy elderly individuals compared to a matched control group. We performed a broad assessment covering cognition, intelligence, attention, reaction time, motor, tactile, and postural performance, as well as subjective well-being and cardio-respiratory performance. After 6 months, in the control group no changes, or further degradation of performance was found. In the dance group, beneficial effects were found for dance-related parameters such as posture and reaction times, but also for cognitive, tactile, motor performance, and subjective well-being. These effects developed without alterations in the cardio-respiratory performance. Correlation of baseline performance with the improvement following intervention revealed that those individuals, who benefitted most from the intervention, were those who showed the lowest performance prior to the intervention. Our findings corroborate previous observations that dancing evokes widespread positive effects. The pre-post design used in the present study implies that the efficacy of dance is most likely not based on a selection bias of particularly gifted individuals. The lack of changes of cardio-respiratory fitness indicates that even moderate levels of physical activity can in combination with rich sensorimotor, cognitive, social, and emotional challenges act to ameliorate a wide spectrum of age-related decline.

  4. Six months of dance intervention enhances postural, sensorimotor, and cognitive performance in elderly without affecting cardio-respiratory functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kattenstroth, Jan-Christoph; Kalisch, Tobias; Holt, Stephan; Tegenthoff, Martin; Dinse, Hubert R

    2013-01-01

    During aging, sensorimotor, cognitive and physical performance decline, but can improve by training and exercise indicating that age-related changes are treatable. Dancing is increasingly used as an intervention because it combines many diverse features making it a promising neuroplasticity-inducing tool. We here investigated the effects of a 6-month dance class (1 h/week) on a group of healthy elderly individuals compared to a matched control group (CG). We performed a broad assessment covering cognition, intelligence, attention, reaction time, motor, tactile, and postural performance, as well as subjective well-being and cardio-respiratory performance. After 6 months, in the CG no changes, or further degradation of performance was found. In the dance group, beneficial effects were found for dance-related parameters such as posture and reaction times, but also for cognitive, tactile, motor performance, and subjective well-being. These effects developed without alterations in the cardio-respiratory performance. Correlation of baseline performance with the improvement following intervention revealed that those individuals, who benefitted most from the intervention, were those who showed the lowest performance prior to the intervention. Our findings corroborate previous observations that dancing evokes widespread positive effects. The pre-post design used in the present study implies that the efficacy of dance is most likely not based on a selection bias of particularly gifted individuals. The lack of changes of cardio-respiratory fitness indicates that even moderate levels of physical activity can in combination with rich sensorimotor, cognitive, social, and emotional challenges act to ameliorate a wide spectrum of age-related decline.

  5. Enhancing the Educational Subject: Cognitive Capitalism, Positive Psychology and Well-Being Training in Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reveley, James

    2013-01-01

    Positive psychology is influencing educational policy and practice in Britain and North America. This article reveals how this psychological discourse and its offshoot school-based training programs, which stress happiness, self-improvement and well-being, align with an emergent socio-economic formation: cognitive capitalism. Three key points are…

  6. Facilitation of AMPA receptor synaptic delivery as a molecular mechanism for cognitive enhancement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knafo, Shira; Venero, César; Sánchez-Puelles, Cristina;

    2012-01-01

    Cell adhesion molecules and downstream growth factor-dependent signaling are critical for brain development and synaptic plasticity, and they have been linked to cognitive function in adult animals. We have previously developed a mimetic peptide (FGL) from the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM)...

  7. Cognitive Science Implications for Enhancing Training Effectiveness in a Serious Gaming Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greitzer, Frank L.; Kuchar, Olga Anna; Huston, Kristy

    2007-01-01

    Serious games use entertainment principles, creativity, and technology to meet government or corporate training objectives, but these principles alone will not guarantee that the intended learning will occur. To be effective, serious games must incorporate sound cognitive, learning, and pedagogical principles into their design and structure. In…

  8. Evaluating FOCUS-2's Effectiveness in Enhancing First-Year College Students' Social Cognitive Career Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tirpak, David M.; Schlosser, Lewis Z.

    2013-01-01

    This study examined the effectiveness of the computer-assisted career guidance system, FOCUS-2, on 1st-year college students' social cognitive career development. Specifically, the authors assessed career decision self-efficacy (CDSE) and assessment of attributions for career decision making (AACDM) using repeated measures analyses of variance…

  9. [Non-invasive brain stimulation in neurology : Transcranial direct current stimulation to enhance cognitive functioning].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonenko, D; Flöel, A

    2016-08-01

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) has been successfully used in neuroscientific research to modulate cognitive functions. Recent studies suggested that improvement of behavioral performance is associated with tDCS-induced modulation of neuronal activity and connectivity. Thus, tDCS may also represent a promising tool for reconstitution of cognitive functions in the context of memory decline related to Alzheimer's disease or aphasia following stroke; however, evidence from randomized sham-controlled clinical trials is still scarce. Initial results of tDCS-induced behavioral improvement in patients with Alzheimer's dementia and its precursors indicated that an intense memory training combined with tDCS may be effective. Early interventions in the stage of mild cognitive impairment could be crucial but further evidence is needed to substantiate this. In patients with aphasia following stroke tDCS was applied to the left and right hemispheres, with varying results depending on the severity of the symptoms and polarity of the stimulation. Patients with mild aphasia can benefit from tDCS of the language dominant hemisphere while in patients with severe aphasia tDCS of right hemispheric homologous brain language areas may be particularly relevant. Moreover, recent studies suggested that an intervention in the subacute phase of aphasia could be most promising. In summary, tDCS could provide the exciting possibility to reconstitute cognitive functions in patients with neurological disorders. Future studies have to elucidate whether tDCS can be used in the clinical routine to prevent further cognitive decline in neurodegenerative diseases and whether beneficial effects from experimental studies translate into long-term improvement in activities of daily life.

  10. Enhancing Cognitive Training Through Aerobic Exercise After a First Schizophrenia Episode: Theoretical Conception and Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nuechterlein, Keith H; Ventura, Joseph; McEwen, Sarah C; Gretchen-Doorly, Denise; Vinogradov, Sophia; Subotnik, Kenneth L

    2016-07-01

    Cognitive training (CT) and aerobic exercise have separately shown promise for improving cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. Aerobic exercise releases brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which promotes synaptic plasticity and neurogenesis. Thus, aerobic exercise provides a neurotrophic platform for neuroplasticity-based CT. The combination of aerobic exercise and CT may yield more robust effects than CT alone, particularly in the initial course of schizophrenia. In a pilot study, 7 patients with a recent onset of schizophrenia were assigned to Cognitive Training & Exercise (CT&E) and 9 to CT alone for a 10-week period. Posit Science programs were used for CT. Neurocognitive training focused on tuning neural circuits related to perceptual processing and verbal learning and memory. Social cognitive training used the same learning principles with social and affective stimuli. Both groups participated in these training sessions 2d/wk, 2h/d. The CT&E group also participated in an aerobic conditioning program for 30 minutes at our clinic 2d/wk and at home 2d/wk. The effect size for improvement in the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery Overall Composite score for CT&E patients relative to CT patients was large. Functional outcome, particularly independent living skills, also tended to improve more in the CT&E than in the CT group. Muscular endurance, cardiovascular fitness, and diastolic blood pressure also showed relative improvement in the CT&E compared to the CT group. These encouraging pilot study findings support the promise of combining CT and aerobic exercise to improve the early course of schizophrenia.

  11. Neural correlates of emotional processing in depression: Changes with cognitive behavioral therapy and predictors of treatment response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritchey, Maureen; Dolcos, Florin; Eddington, Kari M.; Strauman, Timothy J.; Cabeza, Roberto

    2010-01-01

    Major depressive disorder (MDD) is characterized by the presence of disturbances in emotional processing. However, the neural correlates of these alterations, and how they may be affected by therapeutic interventions, remain unclear. The present study addressed these issues in a preliminary investigation using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine neural responses to positive, negative, and neutral pictures in unmedicated MDD patients (N = 22) versus controls (N = 14). After this initial scan, MDD patients were treated with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and scanned again after treatment. Within regions that showed pre-treatment differences between patients and controls, we tested the association between pre-treatment activity and subsequent treatment response as well as activity changes from pre- to post-treatment. This study yielded three main findings. First, prior to treatment and relative to controls, patients exhibited overall reduced activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (PFC), diminished discrimination between emotional and neutral items in the amygdala, caudate, and hippocampus, and enhanced responses to negative versus positive stimuli in the left anterior temporal lobe (ATL) and right dorsolateral PFC. Second, CBT-related symptom improvement in MDD patients was predicted by increased activity at baseline in ventromedial PFC as well as the valence effects in the ATL and dorsolateral PFC. Third, from pre- to post-treatment, MDD patients exhibited overall increases in ventromedial PFC activation, enhanced arousal responses in the amygdala, caudate, and hippocampus, and a reversal of valence effects in the ATL. The study was limited by the relatively small sample that was able to complete both scan sessions, as well as an inability to determine the influence of comorbid disorders within the current sample. Nevertheless, components of the neural networks corresponding to emotion processing disturbances in MDD appear to resolve

  12. Music exposure improves spatial cognition by enhancing the BDNF level of dorsal hippocampal subregions in the developing rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Yingshou; Chen, Wenxi; Wang, Yanran; Jing, Wei; Gao, Shan; Guo, Daqing; Xia, Yang; Yao, Dezhong

    2016-03-01

    Previous research has shown that dorsal hippocampus plays an important role in spatial memory process. Music exposure can enhance brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression level in dorsal hippocampus (DH) and thus enhance spatial cognition ability. But whether music experience may affect different subregions of DH in the same degree remains unclear. Here, we studied the effects of exposure to Mozart K.448 on learning behavior in developing rats using the classical Morris water maze task. The results showed that early music exposure could enhance significantly learning performance of the rats in the water maze test. Meanwhile, the BDNF/TrkB level of dorsal hippocampus CA3 (dCA3) and dentate gyrus (dDG) was significantly enhanced in rats exposed to Mozart music as compared to those without music exposure. In contrast, the BDNF/TrkB level of dorsal hippocampus CA1 (dCA1) was not affected. The results suggest that the spatial memory improvement by music exposure in rats may be associated with the enhanced BDNF/TrkB level of dCA3 and dDG.

  13. Changes of intranetwork and internetwork functional connectivity in Alzheimer’s disease and mild cognitive impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Haoze; Zhou, Peng; Alcauter, Sarael; Chen, Yuanyuan; Cao, Hongbao; Tian, Miao; Ming, Dong; Qi, Hongzhi; Wang, Xuemin; Zhao, Xin; He, Feng; Ni, Hongyan; Gao, Wei

    2016-08-01

    Objective. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a serious neurodegenerative disorder characterized by deficits of working memory, attention, language and many other cognitive functions. Although different stages of the disease are relatively well characterized by clinical criteria, stage-specific pathological changes in the brain remain relatively poorly understood, especially at the level of large-scale functional networks. In this study, we aimed to characterize the potential disruptions of large-scale functional brain networks based on a sample including amnestic mild cognition impairment (aMCI) and AD patients to help delineate the underlying stage-dependent AD pathology. Approach. We sought to identify the neural connectivity mechanisms of aMCI and AD through examination of both intranetwork and internetwork interactions among four of the brain’s key networks, namely dorsal attention network (DAN), default mode network (DMN), executive control network (ECN) and salience network (SAL). We analyzed functional connectivity based on resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) data from 25 Alzheimer’s disease patients, 20 aMCI patients and 35 elderly normal controls (NC). Main results. Intranetwork functional disruptions within the DAN and ECN were detected in both aMCI and AD patients. Disrupted intranetwork connectivity of DMN and anti-correlation between DAN and DMN were observed in AD patients. Moreover, aMCI-specific alterations in the internetwork functional connectivity of SAL were observed. Significance. Our results confirmed previous findings that AD pathology was related to dysconnectivity both within and between resting-state networks but revealed more spatial details. Moreover, the SAL network, reportedly flexibly coupling either with the DAN or DMN networks during different brain states, demonstrated interesting alterations specifically in the early stage of the disease.

  14. Neural correlates of cognitive improvements following cognitive remediation in schizophrenia: a systematic review of randomized trials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clémence Isaac

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Cognitive impairments are a core feature in schizophrenia and are linked to poor social functioning. Numerous studies have shown that cognitive remediation can enhance cognitive and functional abilities in patients with this pathology. The underlying mechanism of these behavioral improvements seems to be related to structural and functional changes in the brain. However, studies on neural correlates of such enhancement remain scarce. Objectives: We explored the neural correlates of cognitive enhancement following cognitive remediation interventions in schizophrenia and the differential effect between cognitive training and other therapeutic interventions or patients’ usual care. Method: We searched MEDLINE, PsycInfo, and ScienceDirect databases for studies on cognitive remediation therapy in schizophrenia that used neuroimaging techniques and a randomized design. Search terms included randomized controlled trial, cognitive remediation, cognitive training, rehabilitation, magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography, electroencephalography, magnetoencephalography, near infrared spectroscopy, and diffusion tensor imaging. We selected randomized controlled trials that proposed multiple sessions of cognitive training to adult patients with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder and assessed its efficacy with imaging techniques. Results: In total, 15 reports involving 19 studies were included in the systematic review. They involved a total of 455 adult patients, 271 of whom received cognitive remediation. Cognitive remediation therapy seems to provide a neurobiological enhancing effect in schizophrenia. After therapy, increased activations are observed in various brain regions mainly in frontal – especially prefrontal – and also in occipital and anterior cingulate regions during working memory and executive tasks. Several studies provide evidence of an improved functional connectivity after cognitive training, suggesting a

  15. Associations Between the Big Five Personality Traits and the Non-Medical Use of Prescription Drugs for Cognitive Enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sattler, Sebastian; Schunck, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    While the number of studies of the non-medical use of prescription drugs to augment cognitive functions is growing steadily, psychological factors that can potentially help explain variance in such pharmaceutical cognitive enhancement (CE) behavior are often neglected in research. This study investigates the association between the Big Five personality traits and a retrospective (prior CE-drug use) as well as a prospective (willingness to use CE drugs) measure of taking prescription drugs with the purpose of augmenting one's cognitive functions (e.g., concentration, memory, or vigilance) without medical necessity. We use data from a large representative survey of German employees (N = 6454, response rate = 29.8%). The Five Factor Model (FFM) of Personality was measured with a short version of the Big Five Personality Traits Inventory (BFI-S), which includes: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Together with this, demographic variables such as gender, age, education, and income were used as potential confounders in multiple logistic regression models. Our results show a 2.96% lifetime prevalence of CE-drug use and a 10.45% willingness to (re)use such drugs in the future. We found that less conscientious and more neurotic respondents have a higher probability of prior CE-drug use and a greater willingness to use CE drugs in the future. No significant effects were found for openness, extraversion, or agreeableness. Prior CE-drug use was strongly associated with a greater willingness to take such drugs in the future. This study shows that specific personality traits are not only associated with prior enhancement behavior, but also affect the willingness to (re)use such drugs. It helps increase understanding of the risk factors of CE-drug use, which is a health-related behavior that can entail severe side-effects for consumers. The knowledge gathered can thus help improve interventions aimed at minimizing health

  16. Cognitive-enhancing and antioxidant activities of iridoid glycosides from Scrophularia buergeriana in scopolamine-treated mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Eun Ju; Lee, Ki Yong; Kim, Seung Hyun; Sung, Sang Hyun; Kim, Young Choong

    2008-06-24

    The cognitive-enhancing activities of E-harpagoside and 8-O-E-p-methoxycinnamoylharpagide (MCA-Hg) isolated from Scrophularia buergeriana were evaluated in scopolamine-induced amnesic mice by the Morris water maze and by passive avoidance tests. E-harpagoside and MCA-Hg significantly improved the impairment of reference memory induced by scopolamine in the Morris water maze test. The mean escape latency, the mean path length and swimming movement were also improved by both compounds. In passive avoidance test, E-harpagoside and MCA-Hg (2 mg/kg body weight, p.o.) significantly ameliorated scopolamine-induced amnesia by as much as 70% of the level found in normal control mice. Donepezil, an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor and the most widely used drug for AD treatment was employed as a positive control. The activity of acetylcholinesterase was inhibited significantly by E-harpagoside or MCA-Hg within the cortex and hippocampus to a level similar to that observed in mice treated with donepezil (2 mg/kg body weight, p.o.). Moreover, treatment with E-harpagoside or MCA-Hg to scopolamine-induced amnesic mice significantly decreased TBARS level which was accompanied by an increase in the activities or contents of glutathione reductase, SOD and reduced GSH. We believe these data demonstrate that E-harpagoside or MCA-Hg exerted potent cognitive-enhancing activity through both anti-acetylcholinesterase and antioxidant mechanisms.

  17. Hacktivism 1-2-3: how privacy enhancing technologies change the face of anonymous hacktivism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bodó, B.

    2014-01-01

    This short essay explores how the notion of hacktivism changes due to easily accessible, military grade Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PETs). Privacy Enhancing Technologies, technological tools which provide anonymous communications and protect users from online surveillance enable new forms of onl

  18. Yoga-Enhanced Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (Y-CBT) for Anxiety Management: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalsa, Manjit K.; Greiner-Ferris, Julie M.; Hofmann, Stefan G.; Khalsa, Sat Bir S.

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive behavioral therapy is an effective treatment for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), but there is still room for improvement. The aim of the present study was to examine the potential benefit of enriching cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with Kundalini Yoga (Y-CBT). Participants consisted of treatment resistant clients at a community mental health clinic. A total of 32 participants enrolled in the study and 22 completed the program. After the Y-CBT intervention, pre-post comparisons showed statistically significant improvements in state and trait anxiety, depression, panic, sleep, and quality of life. Results from this preliminary study suggest that Y-CBT may have potential as a promising treatment for those suffering from GAD. PMID:24804619

  19. Bilingualism Enriches the Poor: Enhanced Cognitive Control in Low-Income Minority Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engel de Abreu, Pascale M. J.; Cruz-Santos, Anabela; Tourinho, Carlos J.; Martin, Romain; Bialystok, Ellen

    2014-01-01

    This study explores whether the cognitive advantage associated with bilingualism in executive functioning extends to young immigrant children challenged by poverty and, if it does, which specific processes are most affected. In the study reported here, 40 Portuguese-Luxembourgish bilingual children from low-income immigrant families in Luxembourg and 40 matched monolingual children from Portugal completed visuospatial tests of working memory, abstract reasoning, selective attention, and interference suppression. Two broad cognitive factors of executive functioning—representation (abstract reasoning and working memory) and control (selective attention and interference suppression)—emerged from principal component analysis. Whereas there were no group differences in representation, the bilinguals performed significantly better than did the monolinguals in control. These results demonstrate, first, that the bilingual advantage is neither confounded with nor limited by socioeconomic and cultural factors and, second, that separable aspects of executive functioning are differentially affected by bilingualism. The bilingual advantage lies in control but not in visuospatial representational processes. PMID:23044796

  20. Bilingualism enriches the poor: enhanced cognitive control in low-income minority children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engel de Abreu, Pascale M J; Cruz-Santos, Anabela; Tourinho, Carlos J; Martin, Romain; Bialystok, Ellen

    2012-01-01

    This study explores whether the cognitive advantage associated with bilingualism in executive functioning extends to young immigrant children challenged by poverty and, if it does, which specific processes are most affected. In the study reported here, 40 Portuguese-Luxembourgish bilingual children from low-income immigrant families in Luxembourg and 40 matched monolingual children from Portugal completed visuospatial tests of working memory, abstract reasoning, selective attention, and interference suppression. Two broad cognitive factors of executive functioning-representation (abstract reasoning and working memory) and control (selective attention and interference suppression)-emerged from principal component analysis. Whereas there were no group differences in representation, the bilinguals performed significantly better than did the monolinguals in control. These results demonstrate, first, that the bilingual advantage is neither confounded with nor limited by socioeconomic and cultural factors and, second, that separable aspects of executive functioning are differentially affected by bilingualism. The bilingual advantage lies in control but not in visuospatial representational processes.

  1. Case Report: "ADHD Trainer": the mobile application that enhances cognitive skills in ADHD patients

    OpenAIRE

    Ruiz-Manrique, Gonzalo; Montañes-Rada, Francisco; Kevin J. Black; Weinstein, Aviv; Tajima-Pozo, Kazuhiro

    2015-01-01

    We report the case of a 10 year old patient diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and comorbid video game addiction, who was treated with medication combined with a novel cognitive training method based on video games called TCT method. A great risk of developing video game or internet addiction has been reported in children, especially in children with ADHD. Despite this risk, we hypothesize that the good use of these new technologies might be useful to develop new m...

  2. An Explanation for the Difficulty of Leading Conceptual Change Using a Counterintuitive Demonstration: The Relationship between Cognitive Conflict and Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Gyoungho; Byun, Taejin

    2012-01-01

    Bringing successful teaching approaches for stimulating conceptual change to normal classrooms has been a major challenge not only for teachers but also for researchers. In this study, we focused on the relationship between cognitive conflict and responses to anomalous data when students are confronted with a counterintuitive demonstration in the…

  3. Cognitive Difficulty Intensifies Age-related Changes in Anterior Frontal Hemodynamics: Novel Evidence from Near-infrared Spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierre, Kirstin L; Lucas, Samuel J E; Guiney, Hayley; Cotter, James D; Machado, Liana

    2017-02-01

    Alongside age-related brain deterioration, cognitive functioning declines, particularly for more demanding tasks. Past research indicates that, to offset this decline, older adults exhibit hemodynamic changes consistent with recruitment of more anterior brain regions. However, the nature of the hemodynamic changes remains unclear. To address this knowledge gap, we used near-infrared spectroscopy in 36 young adults (aged 18-30 years) and 36 older adults (aged 60-72 years) to assess anterior frontal hemodynamic responses to engagement in three cognitive tasks of increasing difficulty. Behavioral results for all three tasks confirmed aging deficits (evidenced by slower reaction times and reduced accuracy rates) that progressively increased with task difficulty. Hemodynamic results showed opposing effects in young versus older adults, with oxygenated and total hemoglobin decreasing in young but increasing in older adults, particularly during the harder tasks. Also, tissue oxygenation increased only in older adults during the harder tasks. Among the older adults only, anterior frontal hemodynamic changes correlated with better cognitive performance, indicating that they were compensatory in nature. These findings provide novel evidence of age-related anterior frontal hemodynamic changes that intensify with cognitive demands and compensate for performance deficits.

  4. Processes of Change in Cognitive-Behavioural Treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder : Current Status and Some Future Directions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Polman, Annemiek; Bouman, Theo K.; van Hout, Wiljo J. P. J.; de Jong, Peter J.; den Boer, Johan A.

    2010-01-01

    The present paper discusses theoretical and methodological issues involved in the processes of change in cognitive-behavioural treatment (CBT) of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Treatment outcome studies showed that CBT is effective in reducing obsessive-compulsive symptoms. However, why and ho

  5. Communicative-Based Curriculum Innovations between Theory and Practice: Implications for EFL Curriculum Development and Student Cognitive and Affective Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shawer, Saad

    2010-01-01

    This qualitative study examines the influence of teacher conceptualisations of communicative language teaching on their actual classroom practice and student cognitive and affective change. The qualitative paradigm underpinned this research at the levels of ontology (multiple teacher realities), epistemology (interaction with, rather than…

  6. Use of Cognitive Dissonance to Produce Changes in the Attitudes and Behavior of Economically Disadvantaged First Grade Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonhardt, Teresa Martin

    Using Festinger's theory of cognitive dissonance as a model, this study attempted to change the attitude and behavior of children toward well liked toys. The results offer only limited support for the theory. The subjects in the three groups did play a significantly different amount of time in the two play periods. The t-tests indicated it was the…

  7. Resolving Cognitive Conflict in a Realistic Situation with Modeling Characteristics: Coping with a Changing Reference in Fractions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahbari, Juhaina Awawdeh; Peled, Irit

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates the effect of using a realistic situation with modeling characteristics in creating and resolving a cognitive conflict to promote understanding of a changing reference in fraction calculations. The study was conducted among 96 seventh graders divided into 2 experimental groups and 1 control group. The experimental groups…

  8. The relationship between MRI and PET changes and cognitive disturbances in MS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Per Soelberg; Jønsson, Agnete; Kahr Mathiesen, Henrik;

    2006-01-01

    Cognitive dysfunction in multiple sclerosis (MS) is present in approximately 50% of the patients. Only moderate correlations have been found between cognitive dysfunction and T2 lesion load, black holes or atrophy. Cognitive dysfunction in MS is probably related to the overall disease burden...... grey matter. Measurements of global NAA using multi-slice EPSI is a new promising method for measurement of the global neuron capacity and can be repeated with only little discomfort and without any risk for the patient....

  9. Cognitive impairment related changes in the elemental concentration in the brain of old rat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Serpa, R.F.B. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro/COPPE, Nuclear Instrumentation Laboratory, P.O. Box: 68509, Zip Code: 21941-972, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)]. E-mail: renata@lin.ufrj.br; Jesus, E.F.O. de [University of Rio de Janeiro State, Physics Institute, RJ (Brazil); Anjos, M.J. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro/COPPE, Nuclear Instrumentation Laboratory, P.O. Box: 68509, Zip Code: 21941-972, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil); University of Rio de Janeiro State, Physics Institute, RJ (Brazil); Lopes, R.T. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro/COPPE, Nuclear Instrumentation Laboratory, P.O. Box: 68509, Zip Code: 21941-972, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil); Carmo, M.G.T. do [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Nutrition Institute, RJ (Brazil); Rocha, M.S. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Department of Basics and Clinic Pharmacy, RJ (Brazil); Rodrigues, L.C. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Department of Basics and Clinic Pharmacy, RJ (Brazil); Moreira, S. [University of Campinas State, Civil Engineering Department, SP (Brazil); Martinez, A.M.B. [Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Department of Histology and Embryology, RJ (Brazil)

    2006-11-15

    In order to evaluate the elemental concentration as a function of learning and memory deficiency, six different structures of the brain were analyzed by total reflection X-ray fluorescence spectrometry with synchrotron radiation (SR-TXRF). To evaluate the cognitive processes, the animals were tested in an adaptation of the Morris water maze. After the test, the animals were divided into two groups: cognitively healthy (control group) and cognitively impaired. The measurements were carried out at XRF beam line at Light Synchrotron Brazilian laboratory, Campinas, Brazil. The following elements were identified: Al, P, S, Cl, K, Ca, Ti, Cr, Fe, Cu, Zn, Br and Rb. K concentration was higher in all regions of the brain studied for control group than the cognitively impaired group. Moreover, the control group presented higher levels for P and Fe in the entorhinal cortex, in the temporal cortex (only P), in the hypothalamus and in the thalamus, than the cognitively impaired group. Br concentration in the animals which presented cognitive impairment was three times larger in the hypothalamus and thalamus, twice larger in temporal cortex and higher in visual cortex than the cognitively healthy group. Cu was more remarkable in the hippocampus and hypothalamus from the animals with cognitive impairment than the control group. We observed that the cognitively impaired group presented highest concentrations of Br and Cu in certain areas than the control group, on the other hand, this group presented highest levels of K for all brain areas studied.

  10. Evidence that changes in social cognitions predict changes in self-reported driver behavior: Causal analyses of two-wave panel data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elliott, Mark A; Thomson, James A; Robertson, Kirsty; Stephenson, Carry; Wicks, John

    2013-01-01

    Previous research on the theory of planned behavior (TPB) is characterized by cross-sectional tests of the model's proposed causal relationships. In the absence of effective experimental techniques for changing the TPB's cognitive antecedents, the present research aimed to provide a stronger non-experimental test of the model, using causal analyses of two-wave panel data. Two studies of driver behavior were conducted in which naturally occurring within-participant changes in TPB constructs were measured over time, and used to predict corresponding within-participant changes in both intentions and behavior. A two-wave panel design was used in both studies. Study 1 had a one-month gap between baseline and follow-up. At both waves, a convenience sample comprising predominantly university students (N=135) completed questionnaire measures of all TPB cognitions and behavior (compliance with speed limits in urban areas). Cross-lagged multiple regressions and bootstrapping procedures for testing multiple mediators supported all of the relationships proposed by the TPB. These findings were extended in study 2 using a large, non-student sample of speed limit offenders (N=1149), a six-month gap between baseline and follow-up, and a larger number of cognitive antecedents. Participants completed postal questionnaires at both waves to measure all cognitions proposed by the two-component TPB, along with moral norm, anticipated regret, self-identity and speeding on urban roads, country roads, and fast dual carriageways or motorways. Changes in instrumental and affective attitude, descriptive norm, self-efficacy, moral norm, anticipated regret and self-identity predicted changes in intention to speed. Changes in intention and self-efficacy predicted behavior-change. Injunctive norm and perceived controllability did not predict intention or behavior-change. Additionally, direct (unhypothesized) relationships with behavior were found for affective attitude, descriptive norm and

  11. Cognitive changes across the menopause transition: A longitudinal evaluation of the impact of age and ovarian status on spatial memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koebele, Stephanie V; Mennenga, Sarah E; Hiroi, Ryoko; Quihuis, Alicia M; Hewitt, Lauren T; Poisson, Mallori L; George, Christina; Mayer, Loretta P; Dyer, Cheryl A; Aiken, Leona S; Demers, Laurence M; Carson, Catherine; Bimonte-Nelson, Heather A

    2017-01-01

    Cognitive changes that occur during mid-life and beyond are linked to both aging and the menopause transition. Studies in women suggest that the age at menopause onset can impact cognitive status later in life; yet, little is known about memory changes that occur during the transitional period to the postmenopausal state. The 4-vinylcyclohexene diepoxide (VCD) model simulates transitional menopause in rodents by depleting the immature ovarian follicle reserve and allowing animals to retain their follicle-deplete ovarian tissue, resulting in a profile similar to the majority of perimenopausal women. Here, Vehicle or VCD treatment was administered to ovary-intact adult and middle-aged Fischer-344 rats to assess the trajectory of cognitive change across time with normal aging and aging with transitional menopause via VCD-induced follicular depletion, as well as to evaluate whether age at the onset of follicular depletion plays a role in cognitive outcomes. Animals experiencing the onset of menopause at a younger age exhibited impaired spatial memory early in the transition to a follicle-deplete state. Additionally, at the mid- and post- follicular depletion time points, VCD-induced follicular depletion amplified an age effect on memory. Overall, these findings suggest that age at the onset of menopause is a critical parameter to consider when evaluating learning and memory across the transition to reproductive senescence. From a translational perspective, this study illustrates how age at menopause onset might impact cognition in menopausal women, and provides insight into time points to explore for the window of opportunity for hormone therapy during the menopause transition period. Hormone therapy during this critical juncture might be especially efficacious at attenuating age- and menopause- related cognitive decline, producing healthy brain aging profiles in women who retain their ovaries throughout their lifespan.

  12. Does Therapeutic Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Cause Cognitive Enhancing Effects in Patients with Neuropsychiatric Conditions? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Donel M; McClintock, Shawn M; Forster, Jane; Loo, Colleen K

    2016-09-01

    Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is increasingly used as a therapeutic intervention for neuropsychiatric illnesses and has demonstrated efficacy for treatment of major depression. However, an unresolved question is whether a course of rTMS treatment results in effects on cognitive functioning. In this systematic review and meta-analysis we aimed to quantitatively determine whether a course of rTMS has cognitive enhancing effects. We examined cognitive outcomes from randomised, sham-controlled studies conducted in patients with neuropsychiatric conditions where rTMS was administered to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) across repeated sessions, searched from PubMed/MEDLINE and other databases up until October 2015. Thirty studies met our inclusion criteria. Cognitive outcomes were pooled and examined across the following domains: Global cognitive function, executive function, attention, working memory, processing speed, visual memory, verbal memory and visuospatial ability. Active rTMS treatment was unassociated with generalised gains across the majority of domains of cognitive functioning examined. Secondary analyses revealed a moderate sized positive effect for improved working memory in a small number of studies in patients with schizophrenia (k = 3, g = 0.507, 95 % CI = [0.183-0.831], p cognitive enhancing effects.

  13. DBT-Enhanced Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Adolescent Trichotillomania: An Adolescent Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welch, Stacy Shaw; Kim, Junny

    2012-01-01

    Results and a case study for a DBT-enhanced habit reversal treatment (HRT) for adult trichotillomania (TTM) (Keuthen & Sprich, 2012) is adapted for use with adolescents. Trichotillomania in adolescence is a very important but understudied problem. Onset often occurs in adolescence, and yet very little treatment research exists. DBT-enhanced habit…

  14. Standardized environmental enrichment supports enhanced brain plasticity in healthy rats and prevents cognitive impairment in epileptic rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raafat P Fares

    Full Text Available Environmental enrichment of laboratory animals influences brain plasticity, stimulates neurogenesis, increases neurotrophic factor expression, and protects against the effects of brain insult. However, these positive effects are not constantly observed, probably because standardized procedures of environmental enrichment are lacking. Therefore, we engineered an enriched cage (the Marlau™ cage, which offers: (1 minimally stressful social interactions; (2 increased voluntary exercise; (3 multiple entertaining activities; (4 cognitive stimulation (maze exploration, and (5 novelty (maze configuration changed three times a week. The maze, which separates food pellet and water bottle compartments, guarantees cognitive stimulation for all animals. Compared to rats raised in groups in conventional cages, rats housed in Marlau™ cages exhibited increased cortical thickness, hippocampal neurogenesis and hippocampal levels of transcripts encoding various genes involved in tissue plasticity and remodeling. In addition, rats housed in Marlau™ cages exhibited better performances in learning and memory, decreased anxiety-associated behaviors, and better recovery of basal plasma corticosterone level after acute restraint stress. Marlau™ cages also insure inter-experiment reproducibility in spatial learning and brain gene expression assays. Finally, housing rats in Marlau™ cages after severe status epilepticus at weaning prevents the cognitive impairment observed in rats subjected to the same insult and then housed in conventional cages. By providing a standardized enriched environment for rodents during housing, the Marlau™ cage should facilitate the uniformity of environmental enrichment across laboratories.

  15. Enriched environment upregulates growthassociated protein 43 expression in the hippocampus and enhances cognitive abilities in prenatally stressed rat offspring

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhengyu Zhang; Hua Zhang; Baoling Du; Zhiqiang Chen

    2012-01-01

    In our previous study, we reported that prenatal restraint stress could induce cognitive deficits, which correlated with a change in expression of growth-associated protein 43 in the hippocampus.In this study, we investigated the effects of enriched environment on cognitive abilities in prenatally stressed rat offspring, as well as the underlying mechanisms. Reverse transcription-PCR and western blot assay results revealed that growth-associated protein 43 mRNA and protein levels were upregulated on postnatal day 15 in the prenatal restraint stress group. Growth-associated protein 43 expression was significantly lower in the prenatal restraint stress group compared with the negative control and prenatal restraint stress plus enriched environment groups on postnatal days 30 and 50. Morris water maze test demonstrated that cognitive abilities were noticeably increased in rats from the prenatal restraint stress plus enriched environment group on postnatal day 50. These results indicate that enriched environment can improve the spatial learning and memory ability of prenatally stressed offspring by upregulating growth-associated protein 43 expression.

  16. Reshaping human intelligence: the debate about genetic enhancement of cognitive functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuchs, Michael

    2010-01-01

    Given the technical feasibility, not only scientists but also moral philosophers approve of an intervention in the genetic basis of our intellectual dispositions. Among the features not related to illnesses, intelligence seems to be an especially promising candidate for genetic enhancement, for intelligence is valued in every culture. The paper presents some of the arguments for and against genetic enhancement of intelligence. The author analyses what kind of good increased intelligence is: an instrumental good for the wellbeing of mankind, a positional good for a given society or an individual, or something that is appreciated by the individual subject because of the positive experience the subject has by making use of it. Since such experiences are not bad in themselves the means of genetic enhancement have to be assessed and compared with accepted practices like education. The author comes to the conclusion that there are morally significant differences between genetic enhancement and accepted practices to enhance intelligence.

  17. Treadmill exercise alleviates impairment of cognitive function by enhancing hippocampal neuroplasticity in the high-fat diet-induced obese mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Tae-Woon; Choi, Hyun-Hee; Chung, Yong-Rak

    2016-06-01

    Physical exercise is one of the most effective methods for managing obesity, and exercise exerts positive effects on various brain functions. Excessive weight gain is known to be related to the impairment of cognitive function. High-fat diet-induced obesity impairs hippocampal neuroplasticity, which impedes cognitive function, such as learning ability and memory function. In this study, we investigated the effect of treadmill exercise on impairment of cognitive function in relation with hippocampal neuroplasticity using high-fat diet-induced obese mice. After obesity was induced by a 20-week high-fat (60%) diet, treadmill exercise was performed for 12 weeks. In the present results, cognitive function was impaired in the high-fat diet-induced obese mice. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and tyrosin kinase B (TrkB) expression and cell proliferation were decreased in the high-fat diet-induced obese mice. Treadmill exercise improved cognitive function through enhancing neuroplasticity, including increased expression of BDNF and TrkB and enhanced cell proliferation. The present results suggest that treadmill exercise enhances hippocampal neuroplasticity, and then potentially plays a protective role against obesity-induced cognitive impairment.

  18. Rational emotive behavior therapy versus cognitive therapy versus pharmacotherapy in the treatment of major depressive disorder: Mechanisms of change analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szentagotai, Aurora; David, Daniel; Lupu, Viorel; Cosman, Doina

    2008-12-01

    Cognitive-behavioral psychotherapies (CBT) are among the first-line interventions for major depressive disorder (MDD), and a significant number of studies indicate their efficacy in the treatment of this disorder. However, differential effects of various forms of CBT have seldom been analyzed in the same experimental design. On the basis of data collected in a randomized clinical trial comparing the efficacy of rational-emotive behavior therapy (REBT), cognitive therapy (CT), and pharmacotherapy (SSRI) in the treatment of MDD, the present article investigates the theory of change advanced by REBT and CT. Measures included to test the two theories of change assess three classes of cognitions: (a) automatic thoughts, (b) dysfunctional attitudes, and (c) irrational beliefs. The results indicate that REBT and CT (and also pharmacotherapy) indiscriminately affect the three classes of cognitions. On the long term (follow-up), a change in implicit demandingness seems more strongly associated with reduced depression and relapse prevention. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).

  19. Intakes of (n-3) Fatty Acids and Fatty Fish Are Not Associated with Cognitive Performance and 6-Year Cognitive Change in Men Participating in the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rest, van de O.; Spiro, A.; Krall-Kaye, E.; Geleijnse, J.M.; Groot, de C.P.G.M.; Tucker, K.L.

    2009-01-01

    High intake of fish and (n-3) PUFA may protect against age-related cognitive decline. However, results are inconsistent and limited data exist regarding changes in multiple cognitive functions over a longer period of time. In this study, we assessed the association between fatty fish intake as well

  20. Income Changes and Cognitive Stimulation in Young Children's Home Learning Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Votruba-Drzal, Elizabeth

    2003-01-01

    Examines influence of household income on cognitive stimulation during the transition to school. Cross-sectional and longitudinal fixed effects regressions are estimated to examine income's effect. Household income was positively related to level of cognitive stimulation in children's home environments across both sets of analyses. Implication for…

  1. Neuroprotective and cognitive enhancing effects of a multi-targeted food intervention in an animal model of neurodegeneration and depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borre, Yuliya E; Panagaki, Theodora; Koelink, Pim J; Morgan, Mary E; Hendriksen, Hendrikus; Garssen, Johan; Kraneveld, Aletta D; Olivier, Berend; Oosting, Ronald S

    2014-04-01

    Rising neurodegenerative and depressive disease prevalence combined with the lack of effective pharmaceutical treatments and dangerous side effects, has created an urgent need for the development of effective therapies. Considering that these disorders are multifactorial in origin, treatments designed to interfere at different mechanistic levels may be more effective than the traditional single-targeted pharmacological concepts. To that end, an experimental diet composed of zinc, melatonin, curcumin, piperine, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5, n-3), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6, n-3), uridine, and choline was formulated. This diet was tested on the olfactory bulbectomized rat (OBX), an established animal model of depression and cognitive decline. The ingredients of the diet have been individually shown to attenuate glutamate excitoxicity, exert potent anti-oxidant/anti-inflammatory properties, and improve synaptogenesis; processes that all have been implicated in neurodegenerative diseases and in the cognitive deficits following OBX in rodents. Dietary treatment started 2 weeks before OBX surgery, continuing for 6 weeks in total. The diet attenuated OBX-induced cognitive and behavioral deficits, except long-term spatial memory. Ameliorating effects of the diet extended to the control animals. Furthermore, the experimental diet reduced hippocampal atrophy and decreased the peripheral immune activation in the OBX rats. The ameliorating effects of the diet on the OBX-induced changes were comparable to those of the NMDA receptor antagonist, memantine, a drug used for the management of Alzheimer's disease. This proof-of-concept study suggests that a diet, which simultaneously targets multiple disease etiologies, can prevent/impede the development of a neurodegenerative and depressive disorders and the concomitant cognitive deficits.

  2. An exploratory study of the relationship between changes in emotion and cognitive processes and treatment outcome in borderline personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMain, Shelley; Links, Paul S; Guimond, Tim; Wnuk, Susan; Eynan, Rahel; Bergmans, Yvonne; Warwar, Serine

    2013-01-01

    This exploratory study examined specific emotion processes and cognitive problem-solving processes in individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD), and assessed the relationship of these changes to treatment outcome. Emotion and cognitive problem-solving processes were assessed using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Linguistic Inquiry Word Count, the Derogatis Affect Balance Scale, and the Problem Solving Inventory. Participants who showed greater improvements in affect balance, problem solving, and the ability to identify and describe emotions showed greater improvements on treatment outcome, with affect balance remaining statistically significant under the most conservative conditions. The results provide preliminary evidence to support the theory that specific improvements in emotion and cognitive processes are associated with positive treatment outcomes (symptom distress, interpersonal functioning) in BPD. The implications for treatment are discussed.

  3. TOWARDS A PHILOSOPHY OF HUMAN TECHNOLOGY: Outlook on cognitive enhancements in Avatar/ Virtual Reality schizophrenia therapy

    OpenAIRE

    Gerner, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    This article hinges on a complex and interdisciplinary field of study named “Philosophy of Human Technology” in which a first non-exhaustive map of ethical, legal and social, technological issues is presented: Technologies constitute, magnify, amplify human experiences, but can also enslave or put human experience and life at risk for example what concerns the right to a “private Life”. The second part of this paper proposes to think three possible interfaces of the topic of Human Cognitive E...

  4. Exercise-related changes of networks in aging and mild cognitive impairment brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pei eHuang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Aging and mild cognitive impairment are accompanied by decline of cognitive functions. Meanwhile, the most common form of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease, which is characterized by loss of memory and other intellectual abilities serious to make difficulties for patients in their daily life. Mild cognitive impairment is a transition period between normal aging and dementia, which has been used for early detection of emerging dementia. It converts to dementia with an annual rate of 5-15% as compared to normal aging with 1% rate. Small decreases in the conversion rate of mild cognitive impairment to Alzheimer’s disease might significantly reduce the prevalence of dementia. Thus, it is important to intervene at the preclinical stage. Since there are still no effective drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease, non-drug intervention is crucial for the prevention and treatment of cognitive decline in aging and mild cognitive impairment populations. Previous studies have found some cognitive brain networks disrupted in aging and mild cognitive impairment population, and physical exercise could effectively remediate the function of these brain networks. Understanding the exercise-related mechanisms is crucial to design efficient and effective physical exercise programs for treatment/intervention of cognitive decline. In this review, we provide an overview of the neuroimaging studies on physical training in normal aging and mild cognitive impairment to identify the potential mechanisms underlying current physical training procedures. Studies of functional magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, magnetoencephalography and positron emission tomography on brain networks were all included. Based on our review, the default mode network, fronto-parietal network and fronto-executive network are probably the three most valuable targets for efficiency evaluation of interventions.

  5. Can Climate Change Enhance Biology Lessons? A Quasi-Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monroe, Martha C.; Hall, Stephanie; Li, Christine Jie

    2016-01-01

    Climate change is a highly charged topic that some adults prefer to ignore. If the same holds true for secondary students, teachers could be challenged to teach about climate change. We structured one activity about the biological concepts of carbon cycle and carbon sequestration in two ways: with and without mention of climate change. Results…

  6. Correlation of cognitive decline and behavioral changes in patients with presenile and senile onset Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pavlović D.M.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD, the most prevalent dementia, is characterized not only by cognitive but also behavioral changes that pose the heaviest burden to caregivers. Differences in the clinical picture depending on the time of disease onset have been observed. We correlated cognitive and behavioral deficits in patients with presenile- and senile-onset AD to explore the differences. We tested 60 AD patients, 19 male and 41 female, mean age 65.2 years with the Dementia Behavior Disturbance Scale (DBD and a standard neuropsychological battery. The patients were divided according to their DBD score into two groups: group I - score 0-2 (n=24; 40%, group II - score 3≥ (n=36; 60%, comparable in disease duration and neurological findings. The cognitive scores were significantly higher in the group with less behavioral changes than in the group with more behavioral changes: Mini Mental State Examination score (p=0.0015, serial subtraction (p=0.0009, block design (p=0.0049, copy of complex figure (p=0.0125, complex visual organization (p=0.0099, divided attention, visual memory and speech comprehension. A significantly higher frequency of behavioral disturbances was registered in patients with senile onset than in the presenile-onset group (p<0.005. There were no sex differences. Our data show a correlation between cognitive decline and behavioral changes in late onset AD patients, indicating that more behavioral disturbances were associated with a more severe degree of cognitive decline, especially in non-verbal functions and attention deficits, compared to early onset patients. [Projekat Ministarstva nauke Republike Srbije, br. 175033 i br. 175022

  7. SHIFTING PERSPECTIVES: COGNITIVE CHANGES PARTIALLY MEDIATE THE IMPACT OF ROMANTIC RELATIONSHIPS ON DESISTANCE FROM CRIME.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simons, Ronald L; Barr, Ashley B

    2014-01-01

    Although research regarding the impact of marriage on desistance is important, most romantic relationships during early adulthoood, the period in the life course when involvement in criminal offending is relatively high, do not involve marriage. Using the internal moderator approach, we tested hypotheses regarding the impact of non-marital romantic relationships on desistance using longitudinal data from a sample of approximately 600 African American young adults. The results largely supported the study hypotheses. We found no significant association between simply being in a romantic relationship and desistance from offending. On the other hand, for both males and females quality of romantic relationship was rather strongly associated with desistance. Partner antisociality only influenced the offending of females. Much of the effect of quality of romantic relationship on desistance was mediated by a reduction in commitment to a criminogenic knowledge structure (a hostile view of people and relationships, concern with immediate gratification, and cynical view of conduct norms). The mediating effect of change in affiliation with deviant peers was not significant once the contribution of criminogenic knowledge structure was taken into account. The findings are discussed in terms of social control and cognitive accounts of the mechanisms whereby romantic relationships influence desistance.

  8. Understanding Student Cognition about Complex Earth System Processes Related to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeal, K. S.; Libarkin, J.; Ledley, T. S.; Dutta, S.; Templeton, M. C.; Geroux, J.; Blakeney, G. A.

    2011-12-01

    The Earth's climate system includes complex behavior and interconnections with other Earth spheres that present challenges to student learning. To better understand these unique challenges, we have conducted experiments with high-school and introductory level college students to determine how information pertaining to the connections between the Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth spheres (e.g., hydrosphere and cryosphere) are processed. Specifically, we include psychomotor tests (e.g., eye-tracking) and open-ended questionnaires in this research study, where participants were provided scientific images of the Earth (e.g., global precipitation and ocean and atmospheric currents), eye-tracked, and asked to provide causal or relational explanations about the viewed images. In addition, the students engaged in on-line modules (http://serc.carleton.edu/eslabs/climate/index.html) focused on Earth system science as training activities to address potential cognitive barriers. The developed modules included interactive media, hands-on lessons, links to outside resources, and formative assessment questions to promote a supportive and data-rich learning environment. Student eye movements were tracked during engagement with the materials to determine the role of perception and attention on understanding. Students also completed a conceptual questionnaire pre-post to determine if these on-line curriculum materials assisted in their development of connections between Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth systems. The pre-post results of students' thinking about climate change concepts, as well as eye-tracking results, will be presented.

  9. Microgenetic experiment in developmental psychology: A new approach to discover cognitive change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matija Svetina

    2002-02-01

    Full Text Available Microgenetic experiment is relatively new tool in a developmental psychology research. It is primarily used in discovering broad range of cognitive processes such as the development of logical operations, memory and attention as well as beliefs or school adaptation. Designed as an extension of simple longitudinal and cross-sectional approaches it is convinient to research mental processes in all developmental stages of human being, from infancy to the old age. Microgenetic approach is characterised with repeated observations of behaviour. Observations are carried out in a relatively short period of time and yet they cover the whole interval between first appearance and stabilisation of a process in a subject. The microgenetic approach offers a good insight into the nature and development of the change. The article presents the general steps in both forming and performing of a microgenetic experiment, as well as the approaches used in the data analyses. On more general level, the article presents major practical and theoretical advantages and disadvantages of a microgenetic approach to be considered in the future.

  10. Comparison of Neuroprotective and Cognition-Enhancing Properties of Hydrolysates from Soybean, Walnut, and Peanut Protein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenzhi Li

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Hydrolysates were prepared from soybean, walnut, and peanut protein by papain, respectively. Their amino acid compositions and molecular weight distributions, the effects of various hydrolysates on H2O2-induced injury PC12 cells, and cognition of mice were investigated, respectively. Results showed that the three hydrolysates were dominated by the peptides with 1–3 KDa with large amount of neurotrophic amino acids. All the hydrolysates exhibited much stronger inhibitory activity against H2O2-induced toxicity than cerebrolysin, and soy protein hydrolysate showed the highest activity. Moreover, the hydrolysates also could reduce the rate of nonviable apoptotic cells at the concentration of 2 mg/mL. The test of animal’s cognition indicated that three hydrolysates could present partly better effect of improving recurred memory ability of normal mice and consolidated memory ability of anisodine-treated mice than piracetam. Therefore, soybean, walnut, and peanut protein hydrolysates were recommended as a potential food raw material for prevention or treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

  11. Video Feedback Intervention to Enhance the Safety of Older Drivers With Cognitive Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Jennifer D.; Bixby, Kimberly

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVE. To demonstrate that g-force technology can be used to help older adults with cognitive impairment improve their driving safety as part of an in-car video feedback intervention. METHOD. Unsafe driving events triggered g-forces leading to capture of video clips. The program included 3 mo of monitoring without intervention, 3 mo of intervention (weekly written progress reports, a DVD of unsafe driving events, and weekly telephone contacts), and 3 mo of postintervention monitoring. RESULTS. Mean total unsafe driving events per 1,000 miles were reduced from baseline by 38% for 9 of 12 participants during the intervention and by 55% for 7 participants during postintervention monitoring. Mean total unsafe driving severity scores per 1,000 miles were reduced from baseline by 43% during the intervention and by 56% during postintervention monitoring. CONCLUSION. Preliminary results suggest that driving safety among older drivers with cognitive impairment can be improved using a behavior modification approach aimed at problem behaviors detected in their natural driving environment. PMID:28218593

  12. Enhancing Positive Citizenship Ideals on Students Through Bibliotherapy and Cognitive Counseling

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ismail Hussein Hashim

    2002-01-01

    The paper views feelings touching as very important in cultivating positive citizenship ideals amongst the youth. The main preoccupation of the study was to provide relevant information concerning the efficacy of bibliotherapy and cognitive counseling as two methods that could be applied by counselors in school field to promote positive citizenship ideals in the students. The study was carried out in Alfashir principality (Sudan)in April 1999. Feelings of one hundred and twenty five secondary school students were touched with regards to what they regarded as citizenship ideals. Adopting control and experimental measures approach, the two groups of the subjects were treated to bibliotherapy and cognitive counseling, while the third group was left as control group. Results indicated significant differences in the efficacy of the two methods for positively fostering citizenship ideals among the youth in favor of bibliotherapy. The results have demonstrated that bibliotherapy can be effectively applied in school setting through the school curriculum to positively foster citizenship ideals among the youth.

  13. Using neurotechnologies to develop virtues: a Buddhist approach to cognitive enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, James

    2013-01-01

    Recently, Fenton (2009) has argued that Buddhist ethics can accommodate the use of attention-enhancing drugs, and Walker (2006 , 2009) has argued that future neurotechnologies may be used to enhance happiness and virtue. This paper uses a Western Buddhist perspective, drawing on many Buddhist traditions, to explore how emerging neurotechnologies may be used to suppress vices and enhance happiness and virtue. A Buddhist approach to the authenticity of technologically-mediated spiritual progress is discussed. The potential utility and dangers of mood manipulation for a Buddhist understanding of liberation are outlined. Then the ten paramitas of Theravadan Buddhism are explored to frame an exploration of the potential genes, neurochemicals and brain structures that could be targeted as part of a program of neurotechnological moral enhancement.

  14. Personality change following internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for severe health anxiety.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Hedman

    Full Text Available Personality traits have traditionally been viewed as stable, but recent studies suggest that they could be affected through psychological treatment. Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy (ICBT for severe health anxiety (DSM-IV hypochondriasis has been shown to be effective in reducing health anxiety, but its effect on measures of personality traits has not been investigated. The main aim of this study was to investigate the impact of ICBT on personality traits in the three broad dimensions--neuroticism, extraversion and aggression. We hypothesized that participants in ICBT would reduce their level of neuroticism compared to controls that did not receive the active treatment. No specific predictions were made regarding extraversion and aggression. Data from a randomized controlled trial were used in which participants were allocated to 12 weeks of ICBT (n = 40 or to a basic attention control condition (n = 41. Personality traits were assessed with the Swedish Universities Scales of Personality and the primary outcome of health anxiety was the Health Anxiety Inventory. There was a significant interaction effect of group and time on neuroticism-related scales, indicating larger pre- to post-treatment reductions in the Internet-based CBT group compared to the control condition. Analyses at 6-month follow-up showed that changes were stable. Traits relating to extraversion and aggression were largely unchanged. This study is the first to demonstrate that a brief ICBT intervention for severe health anxiety causes long-term changes in measures of personality traits related to neuroticism. The treatment thus has a broader impact than just reducing health anxiety.Clinicaltrials.gov (ID NCT00828152.

  15. Changes in white matter integrity before conversion from mild cognitive impairment to Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michaela Defrancesco

    Full Text Available Mild cognitive impairment (MCI may represent an early stage of dementia conferring a particularly high annual risk of 15-20% of conversion to Alzheimer's disease (AD. Recent findings suggest that not only gray matter (GM loss but also a decline in white matter (WM integrity may be associated with imminent conversion from MCI to AD.In this study we used Voxel-based morphometry (VBM to examine if gray matter loss and/or an increase of the apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC reflecting mean diffusivity (MD are an early marker of conversion from MCI to AD in a high risk population.Retrospective neuropsychological and clinical data were collected for fifty-five subjects (MCI converters n = 13, MCI non-converters n = 14, healthy controls n = 28 at baseline and one follow-up visit. All participants underwent diffusion weighted imaging (DWI and T1-weighted structural magnetic resonance imaging scans at baseline to analyse changes in GM density and WM integrity using VBM.At baseline MCI converters showed impaired performance in verbal memory and naming compared to MCI non-converters. Further, MCI converters showed decreased WM integrity in the frontal, parietal, occipital, as well as the temporal lobe prior to conversion to AD. Multiple regression analysis showed a positive correlation of gray matter atrophy with specific neuropsychological test results.Our results suggest that additionally to morphological changes of GM a reduced integrity of WM indicates an imminent progression from MCI stage to AD. Therefore, we suggest that DWI is useful in the early diagnosis of AD.

  16. Cognitive Changes during Prolonged Stay at High Altitude and Its Correlation with C-Reactive Protein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheng Li Hu

    Full Text Available Hypersensitive C-reaction protein (hsCRP may be a risk factor for cognitive impairment resulting from Alzheimer's disease (AD, stroke, and vascular dementia. This study explored the correlation of peripheral blood hsCRP level with cognitive decline due to high altitude exposure. The study was conducted on 100 male military participants who had never been to high altitude. Cerebral oxygen saturation monitoring, event related potentials (P300, N200 detection, and neurocognitive assessment was performed and total hsCRP, interleukin-6 (IL-6, and homocysteine was estimated at 500 m altitude, 3650 m altitude, 3 day, 1, and 3 month post arriving at the base camp (4400 m, and 1 month after coming back to the 500 m altitude. High altitude increased brain oxygen saturation, prolonged P300 and N200 latencies, injured cognitive functions, and raised plasma hsCRP levels. But they all recovered in varying degrees at 1 and 3 month post arriving at the base camp (4400 m. P300 latencies and hsCRP levels were strongly correlated to cognitive performances. These results suggested that cognitive deterioration occurred during the acute period of exposure to high altitude and may recover probably owning to acclimatization after extended stay at high altitude. Plasma hsCRP is inversely correlated to neurological cognition and it may be a potential biomarker for the prediction of high altitude induced cognitive dysfunction.

  17. Cognitive Changes during Prolonged Stay at High Altitude and Its Correlation with C-Reactive Protein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Sheng Li; Xiong, Wei; Dai, Zhi Qiang; Zhao, Heng Li; Feng, Hua

    2016-01-01

    Hypersensitive C-reaction protein (hsCRP) may be a risk factor for cognitive impairment resulting from Alzheimer’s disease (AD), stroke, and vascular dementia. This study explored the correlation of peripheral blood hsCRP level with cognitive decline due to high altitude exposure. The study was conducted on 100 male military participants who had never been to high altitude. Cerebral oxygen saturation monitoring, event related potentials (P300, N200) detection, and neurocognitive assessment was performed and total hsCRP, interleukin-6 (IL-6), and homocysteine was estimated at 500m altitude, 3650m altitude, 3day, 1, and 3 month post arriving at the base camp (4400m), and 1 month after coming back to the 500m altitude. High altitude increased brain oxygen saturation, prolonged P300 and N200 latencies, injured cognitive functions, and raised plasma hsCRP levels. But they all recovered in varying degrees at 1 and 3 month post arriving at the base camp (4400m). P300 latencies and hsCRP levels were strongly correlated to cognitive performances. These results suggested that cognitive deterioration occurred during the acute period of exposure to high altitude and may recover probably owning to acclimatization after extended stay at high altitude. Plasma hsCRP is inversely correlated to neurological cognition and it may be a potential biomarker for the prediction of high altitude induced cognitive dysfunction. PMID:26731740

  18. Deletion of glycine transporter 1 (GlyT1) in forebrain neurons facilitates reversal learning: enhanced cognitive adaptability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Philipp; Boison, Detlev; Möhler, Hanns; Feldon, Joram; Yee, Benjamin K

    2009-10-01

    Local availability of glycine near N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) is partly regulated by neuronal glycine transporter 1 (GlyT1), which can therefore modulate NMDAR function because binding to the glycine site of the NMDAR is necessary for channel activation. Disrupting GlyT1 in forebrain neurons has been shown to enhance Pavlovian conditioning and object recognition memory. Here, the authors report that the same genetic manipulation facilitated reversal learning in the water maze test of reference memory, but did not lead to any clear improvement in a working memory version of the water maze test. Facilitation in a nonspatial discrimination reversal task conducted on a T maze was also observed, supporting the conclusion that forebrain neuronal GlyT1 may modulate the flexibility in (new) learning and relevant mnemonic functions. One possibility is that these phenotypes may reflect reduced susceptibility to certain forms of proactive interference. This may be relevant for the suggested clinical application of GlyT1 inhibitors in the treatment of cognitive deficits, including schizophrenia, which is characterized by cognitive inflexibility in addition to the positive symptoms of the disease.

  19. Cognitive Deficits, Changes in Synaptic Function, and Brain Pathology in a Mouse Model of Normal Aging(1,2,3).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, Martin; Wu, Tiffany; Hanson, Jesse E; Alam, Nazia M; Solanoy, Hilda; Ngu, Hai; Lauffer, Benjamin E; Lin, Han H; Dominguez, Sara L; Reeder, Jens; Tom, Jennifer; Steiner, Pascal; Foreman, Oded; Prusky, Glen T; Scearce-Levie, Kimberly

    2015-09-01

    Age is the main risk factor for sporadic Alzheimer's disease. Yet, cognitive decline in aged rodents has been less well studied, possibly due to concomitant changes in sensory or locomotor function that can complicate cognitive tests. We tested mice that were 3, 11, and 23 months old in cognitive, sensory, and motor measures, and postmortem measures of gliosis and neural activity (c-Fos). Hippocampal synaptic function was also examined. While age-related impairments were detectable in tests of spatial memory, greater age-dependent effects were observed in tests of associative learning [active avoidance (AA)]. Gross visual function was largely normal, but startle responses to acoustic stimuli decreased with increased age, possibly due to hearing impairments. Therefore, a novel AA variant in which light alone served as the conditioning stimuli was used. Age-related deficits were again observed. Mild changes in vision, as measured by optokinetic responses, were detected in 19- versus 4-month-old mice, but these were not correlated to AA performance. Thus, deficits in hearing or vision are unlikely to account for the observed deficits in cognitive measures. Increased gliosis was observed in the hippocampal formation at older ages. Age-related changes in neural function and plasticity were observed with decreased c-Fos in the dentate gyrus, and decreased synaptic strength and paired-pulse facilitation in CA1 slices. This work, which carefully outlines age-dependent impairments in cognitive and synaptic function, c-Fos activity, and gliosis during normal aging in the mouse, suggests robust translational measures that will facilitate further study of the biology of aging.

  20. Longitudinal change in the use of services in autism spectrum disorder: understanding the role of child characteristics, family demographics, and parent cognitions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siller, Michael; Reyes, Nuri; Hotez, Emily; Hutman, Ted; Sigman, Marian

    2014-05-01

    The aim of this study was to identify child characteristics, family demographics, and parent cognitions that may affect access to early intervention, special education, and related services. The sample included 70 families of young children with autism spectrum disorders. All parents were enrolled in a short education program, providing them with basic information and resources on advocating for a young child with autism spectrum disorders (Parent Advocacy Coaching). Longitudinal change in children's intervention program in the community was evaluated over a period of about 27 months, starting 12 months prior to enrollment in Parent Advocacy Coaching. Results revealed large individual differences in the intensity of children's individual and school-based services. Despite this variability, only two child characteristics (age, gender) emerged as independent predictors. In contrast, the intensity of children's intervention programs was independently predicted by a broad range of demographic characteristics, including parental education, child ethnicity and race, and family composition. Finally, even after child characteristics and family demographics were statistically controlled, results revealed associations between specific parental cognitions (parenting efficacy, understanding of child development) and the subsequent rate of change in the intensity of children's intervention programs. Implications for improving educational programs that aim to enhance parent advocacy are discussed.

  1. Brief Report: Is Cognitive Rehabilitation Needed in Verbal Adults with Autism? Insights from Initial Enrollment in a Trial of Cognitive Enhancement Therapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eack, Shaun M.; Bahorik, Amber L.; Hogarty, Susan S.; Greenwald, Deborah P.; Litschge, Maralee Y.; Mazefsky, Carla A.; Minshew, Nancy J.

    2013-01-01

    Cognitive rehabilitation is an emerging set of potentially effective interventions for the treatment of autism spectrum disorder, yet the applicability of these approaches for "high functioning" adults who have normative levels of intelligence remains unexplored. This study examined the initial cognitive performance characteristics of 40…

  2. Physical activity and cognitive vitality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prakash, Ruchika Shaurya; Voss, Michelle W; Erickson, Kirk I; Kramer, Arthur F

    2015-01-01

    We examine evidence supporting the associations among physical activity (PA), cognitive vitality, neural functioning, and the moderation of these associations by genetic factors. Prospective epidemiological studies provide evidence for PA to be associated with a modest reduction in relative risk of cognitive decline. An evaluation of the PA-cognition link across the life span provides modest support for the effect of PA on preserving and even enhancing cognitive vitality and the associated neural circuitry in older adults, with the majority of benefits seen for tasks that are supported by the prefrontal cortex and the hippocampus. The literature on children and young adults, however, is in need of well-powered randomized controlled trials. Future directions include a more sophisticated understanding of the dose-response relationship, the integration of genetic and epigenetic approaches, inclusion of multimodal imaging of brain-behavior changes, and finally the design of multimodal interventions that may yield broader improvements in cognitive function.

  3. Cognitive Enhancement in Infants Associated with Increased Maternal Fruit Intake During Pregnancy: Results from a Birth Cohort Study with Validation in an Animal Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francois V. Bolduc

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In-utero nutrition is an under-studied aspect of cognitive development. Fruit has been an important dietary constituent for early hominins and humans. Among 808 eligible CHILD-Edmonton sub-cohort subjects, 688 (85% had 1-year cognitive outcome data. We found that each maternal daily serving of fruit (sum of fruit plus 100% fruit juice consumed during pregnancy was associated with a 2.38 point increase in 1-year cognitive development (95% CI 0.39, 4.37; p < 0.05. Consistent with this, we found 30% higher learning Performance index (PI scores in Drosophila offspring from parents who consumed 30% fruit juice supplementation prenatally (PI: 85.7; SE 1.8; p < 0.05 compared to the offspring of standard diet parents (PI: 65.0 SE 3.4. Using the Drosophila model, we also show that the cyclic adenylate monophosphate (cAMP pathway may be a major regulator of this effect, as prenatal fruit associated cognitive enhancement was blocked in Drosophila rutabaga mutants with reduced Ca2+-Calmodulin-dependent adenylyl cyclase. Moreover, gestation is a critical time for this effect as postnatal fruit intake did not enhance cognitive performance in either humans or Drosophila. Our study supports increased fruit consumption during pregnancy with significant increases in infant cognitive performance. Validation in Drosophila helps control for potential participant bias or unmeasured confounders.

  4. Cognitive Enhancement in Infants Associated with Increased Maternal Fruit Intake During Pregnancy: Results from a Birth Cohort Study with Validation in an Animal Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolduc, Francois V; Lau, Amanda; Rosenfelt, Cory S; Langer, Steven; Wang, Nan; Smithson, Lisa; Lefebvre, Diana; Alexander, R Todd; Dickson, Clayton T; Li, Liang; Becker, Allan B; Subbarao, Padmaja; Turvey, Stuart E; Pei, Jacqueline; Sears, Malcolm R; Mandhane, Piush J

    2016-06-01

    In-utero nutrition is an under-studied aspect of cognitive development. Fruit has been an important dietary constituent for early hominins and humans. Among 808 eligible CHILD-Edmonton sub-cohort subjects, 688 (85%) had 1-year cognitive outcome data. We found that each maternal daily serving of fruit (sum of fruit plus 100% fruit juice) consumed during pregnancy was associated with a 2.38 point increase in 1-year cognitive development (95% CI 0.39, 4.37; p<0.05). Consistent with this, we found 30% higher learning Performance index (PI) scores in Drosophila offspring from parents who consumed 30% fruit juice supplementation prenatally (PI: 85.7; SE 1.8; p<0.05) compared to the offspring of standard diet parents (PI: 65.0 SE 3.4). Using the Drosophila model, we also show that the cyclic adenylate monophosphate (cAMP) pathway may be a major regulator of this effect, as prenatal fruit associated cognitive enhancement was blocked in Drosophila rutabaga mutants with reduced Ca(2+)-Calmodulin-dependent adenylyl cyclase. Moreover, gestation is a critical time for this effect as postnatal fruit intake did not enhance cognitive performance in either humans or Drosophila. Our study supports increased fruit consumption during pregnancy with significant increases in infant cognitive performance. Validation in Drosophila helps control for potential participant bias or unmeasured confounders.

  5. Evidence of Change in Brain Activity among Childhood Cancer Survivors Participating in a Cognitive Remediation Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Ping; Li, Yimei; Conklin, Heather M.; Mulhern, Raymond K.; Butler, Robert W.; Ogg, Robert J.

    2012-01-01

    Increased understanding of the underlying mechanisms of cognitive remediation is needed to facilitate development of intervention strategies for childhood cancer survivors experiencing cognitive late effects. Accordingly, a pilot functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study was conducted with 14 cancer survivors (12.02 ± 0.09 years old), who participated in a cognitive remediation clinical trial, and 28 healthy children (12.7 ± 0.6 years old). The ventral visual areas, cerebellum, supplementary motor area, and left inferior frontal cortex were significantly activated in the healthy participants during a continuous performance task. In survivors, brain activation in these regions was diminished at baseline, and increased upon completion of remediation and at a 6-month follow-up. The fMRI activation index for each region of interest was inversely associated with the Conners' Clinical Competence Index (p<.01). The pilot study suggests that fMRI is useful in evaluating neural responses to cognitive remediation. PMID:23079152

  6. Towards an animal model of an antipsychotic drug-resistant cognitive impairment in schizophrenia: scopolamine induces abnormally persistent latent inhibition, which can be reversed by cognitive enhancers but not by antipsychotic drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barak, Segev; Weiner, Ina

    2009-03-01

    Schizophrenia symptoms segregate into positive, negative and cognitive, which exhibit differential sensitivity to drugs. Recent efforts to identify treatments targeting cognitive impairments in schizophrenia have directed attention to the cholinergic system for its well documented role in cognition. Relatedly, muscarinic antagonists (e.g. scopolamine) produce an 'antimuscarinic syndrome', characterized by psychosis and cognitive impairments. Latent inhibition (LI) is the poorer conditioning to a stimulus resulting from its non-reinforced pre-exposure. LI indexes the ability to ignore irrelevant stimuli and aberrations of this capacity produced by pro-psychotic agents (e.g. amphetamine, MK-801) are used extensively to model attentional impairments in schizophrenia. We recently showed that LI was disrupted by scopolamine at low doses, and this was reversed by typical and atypical antipsychotic drugs (APDs) and the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor physostigmine. Here, at a higher dose (1.5 mg/kg), scopolamine produced an opposite pole of attentional impairment, namely, attentional perseveration, whereby scopolamine-treated rats persisted in expressing LI under strong conditioning that prevented LI expression in controls. Scopolamine-induced persistent LI was reversed by cholinergic and glycinergic cognitive enhancers (physostigmine and glycine) but was resistant to both typical and atypical APDs (haloperidol and clozapine). The latter sets scopolamine-induced persistent LI apart from scopolamine- and amphetamine-induced disrupted LI, which are reversed by both typical and atypical APDs, as well as from other cases of abnormally persistent LI including MK-801-induced persistent LI, which is reversed by atypical APDs. Thus, scopolamine-induced persistent LI may provide a pharmacological LI model for screening cognitive enhancers that are efficient for the treatment of APD-resistant cognitive impairments in schizophrenia.

  7. Editorial explaining the change in name of this journal to Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Ralph R

    2014-01-01

    This editorial explains the reasoning behind The Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Behavior Processes name change. This Journal started publication in 1975 as a result of a major reorganization of the American Psychological Association's basic science journals. To signal that expansion of interest, the name of the journal has been changed to Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition. This change is not meant to discourage submission of the types of manuscripts that have most frequently appeared in the journal in recent years but to encourage submission of papers across a broader range of topics.

  8. No Evidence That Short-Term Cognitive or Physical Training Programs or Lifestyles Are Related to Changes in White Matter Integrity in Older Adults at Risk of Dementia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fissler, Patrick; Müller, Hans-Peter; Küster, Olivia C.; Laptinskaya, Daria; Thurm, Franka; Woll, Alexander; Elbert, Thomas; Kassubek, Jan; von Arnim, Christine A. F.; Kolassa, Iris-Tatjana

    2017-01-01

    Cognitive and physical activities can benefit cognition. However, knowledge about the neurobiological mechanisms underlying these activity-induced cognitive benefits is still limited, especially with regard to the role of white matter integrity (WMI), which is affected in cognitive aging and Alzheimer’s disease. To address this knowledge gap, we investigated the immediate and long-term effects of cognitive or physical training on WMI, as well as the association between cognitive and physical lifestyles and changes in WMI over a 6-month period. Additionally, we explored whether changes in WMI underlie activity-related cognitive changes, and estimated the potential of both trainings to improve WMI by correlating training outcomes with WMI. In an observational and interventional pretest, posttest, 3-month follow-up design, we assigned 47 community-dwelling older adults at risk of dementia to 50 sessions of auditory processing and working memory training (n = 13), 50 sessions of cardiovascular, strength, coordination, balance and flexibility exercises (n = 14), or a control group (n = 20). We measured lifestyles trough self-reports, cognitive training skills through training performance, functional physical fitness through the Senior Fitness Test, and global cognition through a cognitive test battery. WMI was assessed via a composite score of diffusion tensor imaging-based fractional anisotropy (FA) of three regions of interest shown to be affected in aging and Alzheimer’s disease: the genu of corpus callosum, the fornix, and the hippocampal cingulum. Effects for training interventions on FA outcomes, as well as associations between lifestyles and changes in FA outcomes were not significant. Additional analyses did show associations between cognitive lifestyle and global cognitive changes at the posttest and the 3-month follow-up (β ≥ 0.40, p ≤ 0.02) and accounting for changes in WMI did not affect these relationships. The targeted training outcomes were

  9. No Evidence That Short-Term Cognitive or Physical Training Programs or Lifestyles Are Related to Changes in White Matter Integrity in Older Adults at Risk of Dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fissler, Patrick; Müller, Hans-Peter; Küster, Olivia C; Laptinskaya, Daria; Thurm, Franka; Woll, Alexander; Elbert, Thomas; Kassubek, Jan; von Arnim, Christine A F; Kolassa, Iris-Tatjana

    2017-01-01

    Cognitive and physical activities can benefit cognition. However, knowledge about the neurobiological mechanisms underlying these activity-induced cognitive benefits is still limited, especially with regard to the role of white matter integrity (WMI), which is affected in cognitive aging and Alzheimer's disease. To address this knowledge gap, we investigated the immediate and long-term effects of cognitive or physical training on WMI, as well as the association between cognitive and physical lifestyles and changes in WMI over a 6-month period. Additionally, we explored whether changes in WMI underlie activity-related cognitive changes, and estimated the potential of both trainings to improve WMI by correlating training outcomes with WMI. In an observational and interventional pretest, posttest, 3-month follow-up design, we assigned 47 community-dwelling older adults at risk of dementia to 50 sessions of auditory processing and working memory training (n = 13), 50 sessions of cardiovascular, strength, coordination, balance and flexibility exercises (n = 14), or a control group (n = 20). We measured lifestyles trough self-reports, cognitive training skills through training performance, functional physical fitness through the Senior Fitness Test, and global cognition through a cognitive test battery. WMI was assessed via a composite score of diffusion tensor imaging-based fractional anisotropy (FA) of three regions of interest shown to be affected in aging and Alzheimer's disease: the genu of corpus callosum, the fornix, and the hippocampal cingulum. Effects for training interventions on FA outcomes, as well as associations between lifestyles and changes in FA outcomes were not significant. Additional analyses did show associations between cognitive lifestyle and global cognitive changes at the posttest and the 3-month follow-up (β ≥ 0.40, p ≤ 0.02) and accounting for changes in WMI did not affect these relationships. The targeted training outcomes were related

  10. Case Report: "ADHD Trainer": the mobile application that enhances cognitive skills in ADHD patients [version 5; referees: 2 approved, 1 approved with reservations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gonzalo Ruiz-Manrique

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available We report the case of a 10 year old patient diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD and comorbid video game addiction, who was treated with medication combined with a novel cognitive training method based on video games called TCT method. A great risk of developing video game or internet addiction has been reported in children, especially in children with ADHD. Despite this risk, we hypothesize that the good use of these new technologies might be useful to develop new methods of cognitive training. The cognitive areas in which a greater improvement was observed through the use of video games were visuospatial working memory and fine motor skills. TCT method is a cognitive training method that enhances cognitive skills such as attention, working memory, processing speed, calculation ability, reasoning, and visuomotor coordination. The purpose of reviewing this case is to highlight that regular cognitive computerized training in ADHD patients may improve some of their cognitive symptoms and might be helpful for treating video game addiction.

  11. Cognition-Enhancing Drugs and Their Appropriateness for Aviation and Ground Troops: A Meta-Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-12-01

    treating ADD and narcolepsy. The effects of methylphenidate in healthy populations are promising; however, its potential for abuse is high, given its...limited to, beta- blockers, typically prescribed for cardiac arrhythmia; methylphenidate , prescribed attention- deficit disorder (ADD); modafinil, a wake...Pharmaceuticals that enhance attention (e.g., methylphenidate ) are becoming increasingly popular among students as study aids on college campuses across the

  12. MISC-MUSIC: A Music Program to Enhance Cognitive Processing among Children with Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portowitz, Adena; Klein, Pnina S.

    2007-01-01

    Research findings confirm positive links between music education, scholastic achievement, and social adaptability, especially among at-risk and special needs children. However, few studies explain how this process occurs. This article presents a didactic approach, which suggests practical ways of enhancing general learning skills while teaching…

  13. Enhancing Divergent Thinking in Visual Arts Education: Effects of Explicit Instruction of Meta-Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Kamp, Marie-Thérèse; Admiraal, Wilfried; van Drie, Jannet; Rijlaarsdam, Gert

    2015-01-01

    Background: The main purposes of visual arts education concern the enhancement of students' creative processes and the originality of their art products. Divergent thinking is crucial for finding original ideas in the initial phase of a creative process that aims to result in an original product. Aims: This study aims to examine the effects…

  14. Enhancing divergent thinking in visual arts education: Effects of explicit instruction of meta-cognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Kamp, M.-T.; Admiraal, W.; van Drie, J.; Rijlaarsdam, G.

    2015-01-01

    Background: The main purposes of visual arts education concern the enhancement of students’ creative processes and the originality of their art products. Divergent thinking is crucial for finding original ideas in the initial phase of a creative process that aims to result in an original product. Ai

  15. The cognitive mechanisms of temporal expression: linguistic changes in historic Spanish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Rosa Vila Pujol

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Linguistic change, which in the framework of the theory of subjectivity is attributable to the attitudes, beliefs or evaluations of the speaker, is explained by reference to the speaker’s subjectivity in the coding of their own statements, resulting in the extension of the pragmatics of some lexical items and some grammatical structures. Following these principles, the objective of this paper is to examine how the syntactic-semantic structure [estar + preposition + infinitive V], which had a strictly temporal function in historic Spanish, developed from a spatial one. In other words, the more objective the sense of place, whether in terms of location or direction, gradually attains more abstract functions, whether pragmatic, lexical and/or grammar items, with the temporal sense one of key meanings. Also, from a Cognitive Grammar perspective, this study focuses on the analysis of the verb estar with prepositions de, en and a, and the aspectual function of the infinitive, looking at its formation and evolution, the semantic representation of its components, associated with both the lexicon and the syntactic composition process of the parts and sentence syntactic units, whether compositional or contextual linguistic sentences. The grammatical categories enumerated above and their combinatorial syntax are where you can discover the semantic values of representation of an event that is seen at a particular point of their development, or with more abstract and subjective values that highlight even a modal dimension.

  16. Motivational Enhancement and Schema-Focused Cognitive Behaviour Therapy in the Treatment of Chronic Eating Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, Louise; Thornton, Chris; Touyz, Stephen W.; Waller, Glenn; Beumont, Pierre J. V.

    2004-01-01

    A day hospital program for the treatment of patients with long-term anorexia nervosa (AN) is described. This program forms part of a comprehensive system of day programs that reflect and incorporate patients' varying degrees of readiness for change and attempt to match patients' readiness for change to the interventions offered in treatment.…

  17. Neurocognitive enhancement or impairment? A systematic meta-analysis of prescription stimulant effects on processing speed, decision-making, planning, and cognitive perseveration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marraccini, Marisa E; Weyandt, Lisa L; Rossi, Joseph S; Gudmundsdottir, Bergljot Gyda

    2016-08-01

    Increasing numbers of adults, particularly college students, are misusing prescription stimulants primarily for cognitive/academic enhancement, so it is critical to explore whether empirical findings support neurocognitive benefits of prescription stimulants. Previous meta-analytic studies have supported small benefits from prescription stimulants for the cognitive domains of inhibitory control and memory; however, no meta-analytic studies have examined the effects on processing speed or the potential impairment on other domains of cognition, including planning, decision-making, and cognitive perseveration. Therefore, the present study conducted a meta-analysis of the available literature examining the effects of prescription stimulants on specific measures of processing speed, planning, decision-making, and cognitive perseveration among healthy adult populations. The meta-analysis results indicated a positive influence of prescription stimulant medication on processing speed accuracy, with an overall mean effect size of g = 0.282 (95% CI [0.077, 0.488]; n = 345). Neither improvements nor impairments were revealed for planning time, planning accuracy, advantageous decision-making, or cognitive perseveration; however, findings are limited by the small number of studies examining these outcomes. Findings support that prescription stimulant medication may indeed act as a neurocognitive enhancer for accuracy measures of processing speed without impeding other areas of cognition. Considering that adults are already engaging in illegal use of prescription stimulants for academic enhancement, as well as the potential for stimulant misuse to have serious side effects, the establishment of public policies informed by interdisciplinary research surrounding this issue, whether restrictive or liberal, is of critical importance. (PsycINFO Database Record

  18. Long-term changes in cognitive bias and coping response as a result of chronic unpredictable stress during adolescence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren eChaby

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Animals that experience adverse events in early life often have life-long changes to their physiology and behavior. Long-term effects of stress during early life have been studied extensively, but less attention has been given to the consequences of negative experiences solely during the adolescent phase. Adolescence is a particularly sensitive period of life when regulation of the glucocorticoid stress hormone response matures and specific regions in the brain undergo considerable change. Aversive experiences during this time might, therefore, be expected to generate long-term consequences for the adult phenotype. Here we investigated the long-term effects of exposure to chronic unpredictable stress during adolescence on adult decision making, coping response, cognitive bias, and exploratory behavior in rats. Rats exposed to chronic unpredictable stress (e.g. isolation, crowding, cage tilt were compared to control animals that were maintained in standard, predictable conditions throughout development. Unpredictable stress during adolescence resulted in a suite of long-term behavioral and cognitive changes including a negative cognitive bias (F1,12 = 5.000, P < 0.05, altered coping response (T1,14 = 2.216, P = 0.04, and accelerated decision making (T1,14 = 3.245, P = 0.01. Exposure to chronic stress during adolescence also caused a short-term increase in boldness behaviors; in a novel object test 15 days after the last stressor, animals exposed to chronic unpredictable stress had decreased latencies to leave a familiar shelter and approach a novel object (T1,14 = 2.240, P = 0.04; T1,14 = 2.419, P = 0.03, respectively. The results showed that stress during adolescence has long-term impacts on behavior and cognition that affect the interpretation of ambiguous stimuli, behavioral response to adverse events, and how animals make decisions. Stress during adolescence also induced short-term changes in the way animals moved around a novel environment.

  19. Detecting cognitive impairment after concussion: sensitivity of change from baseline and normative data methods using the CogSport/Axon cognitive test battery.

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    Louey, Andrea G; Cromer, Jason A; Schembri, Adrian J; Darby, David G; Maruff, Paul; Makdissi, Michael; Mccrory, Paul

    2014-08-01

    Concussion-related cognitive impairments are typically evaluated with repeated neuropsychological assessments where post-injury performances are compared with pre-injury baseline data (baseline method). Many cases of concussions, however, are evaluated in the absence of baseline data by comparing post-injury performances with normative data (normative method). This study aimed to compare the sensitivity and specificity of these two methods using the CogSport/Axon test battery. Normative data and reliable change indices were computed from a non-injured athlete sample (n = 235). Test-retest data from non-injured (n = 260) and recently concussed (n = 29) athlete samples were then used to compare the two methods. The baseline method was found to be more sensitive than the normative method, and both methods had high specificity and overall correct classification rates. This suggests that while the normative method identifies most cases of recent concussions, the baseline method remains a more precise approach to assessing concussion-related cognitive impairments.

  20. Cognitive enhancing, anti-acetylcholinesterase, and antioxidant properties of Tagetes patula on scopolamine-induced amnesia in mice

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    Prakash Ramakrishnan

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Alzheimer′s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a gradual decline in memory associated with shrinkage of brain tissue and loss of neurons with a diminished level of the central cholinergic neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Objective: The present study was performed to examine the effect of ethanolic extract of Tagetes patula (EETP on cognitive impairment induced by scopolamine, a muscarinic antagonist, in mice. Materials and Methods: Rats were treated with EETP and donepezil for 15 successive days followed by treatment with scopolamine (1 mg/kg for 3 days. The changes in behavioral, biochemical, and neurotransmitters were assessed in rats. Cognitive functions were assessed using step-through latency on a passive avoidance apparatus and Morris water maze test. Antioxidants parametes such as superoxide dismutase (SOD, glutathione reductase (GR, lipid peroxidation (LPO, and nitrates were assessed. Neurotransmitters including acetylcholinesterase (AChE, dopamine (DA, and serotonin were also assessed, and neuronal damage was also analyzed. Results: Scopolamine-treated rats showed impaired learning and memory, increased activity of AChE, LPO and decreased levels of SOD, reduced glutathione, nitrates, serotonin, and DA. The EETP significantly reversed the scopolamine-induced cognitive impairment in mice was measured by the passive avoidance test. In addition, EETP decreased escape latency in the Morris water maze. In probe trail session, EETP increased the latency time in the target quadrant. Ex vivo EETP inhibited AChE activity in the mice brain. EETP treated mice significantly increased the SOD, GR, nitrates, DA, and serotonin levels, and decreased the level of LPO when compared with scopolamine-treated mice. Conclusion: These results indicate that EETP may exert anti-amnesic effect through both by anti-AChE and antioxidant mechanisms.

  1. Social Robots, Brain Machine Interfaces and Neuro/Cognitive Enhancers: Three Emerging Science and Technology Products through the Lens of Technology Acceptance Theories, Models and Frameworks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregor Wolbring

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Social robotics, brain machine interfaces and neuro and cognitive enhancement products are three emerging science and technology products with wide-reaching impact for disabled and non-disabled people. Acceptance of ideas and products depend on multiple parameters and many models have been developed to predict product acceptance. We investigated which frequently employed technology acceptance models (consumer theory, innovation diffusion model, theory of reasoned action, theory of planned behaviour, social cognitive theory, self-determination theory, technology of acceptance model, Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology UTAUT and UTAUT2 are employed in the social robotics, brain machine interfaces and neuro and cognitive enhancement product literature and which of the core measures used in the technology acceptance models are implicit or explicit engaged with in the literature.

  2. A periodic diet that mimics fasting promotes multi-system regeneration, enhanced cognitive performance and healthspan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandhorst, Sebastian; Choi, In Young; Wei, Min; Cheng, Chia Wei; Sedrakyan, Sargis; Navarrete, Gerardo; Dubeau, Louis; Yap, Li Peng; Park, Ryan; Vinciguerra, Manlio; Di Biase, Stefano; Mirzaei, Hamed; Mirisola, Mario G.; Childress, Patra; Ji, Lingyun; Groshen, Susan; Penna, Fabio; Odetti, Patrizio; Perin, Laura; Conti, Peter S.; Ikeno, Yuji; Kennedy, Brian K.; Cohen, Pinchas; Morgan, Todd E.; Dorff, Tanya B.; Longo, Valter D.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Prolonged fasting (PF) promotes stress resistance but its effects on longevity are poorly understood. We show that alternating PF and nutrient-rich medium extended yeast lifespan independently of established pro-longevity genes. In mice, four days of a diet that mimics fasting (FMD), developed to minimize the burden of PF, decreased the size of multiple organs/systems; an effect followed upon re-feeding by an elevated number of progenitor and stem cells and regeneration. Bi-monthly FMD cycles started at middle age extended longevity, lowered visceral fat, reduced cancer incidence and skin lesions, rejuvenated the immune system, and retarded bone mineral density loss. In old mice, FMD cycles promoted hippocampal neurogenesis, lowered IGF-1 levels and PKA activity, elevated NeuroD1, and improved cognitive performance. In a pilot clinical trial, three FMD cycles decreased risk factors/biomarkers for aging, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer without major adverse effects, providing support for the use of FMDs to promote healthspan. PMID:26094889

  3. Preliminary Evidence for the Enhancement of Self-Conducted Exposures for OCD using Cognitive Bias Modification

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    Amir, Nader; Kuckertz, Jennie M.; Najmi, Sadia; Conley, Sara L.

    2015-01-01

    Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is the most effective treatment for OCD but it is not accessible to most patients. Attempts to increase the accessibility of ERP via self-directed ERP (sERP) programs such as computerized delivery and bibliotherapy have met with noncompliance, presumably because patients find the exposure exercises unacceptable. Previous research suggests that Cognitive Bias Modification (CBM) interventions may help individuals approach feared situations. The goal of the current study was to test the efficacy of a treatment program for OCD that integrates sERP with CBM. Twenty-two individuals meeting diagnostic criteria for OCD enrolled in our 7-week treatment program. Results suggest that sERP with CBM led to significant reduction of OCD symptoms and functional impairment. Indeed, the magnitude of the effect of this novel treatment, that requires only an initial session with a clinician trained in ERP for OCD, was comparable to that of the gold standard clinician-administered ERP. Moreover, preliminary evidence suggests that CBM interventions targeting interpretation bias may be most effective, whereas those targeting attention and working memory bias may not be so. PMID:26366021

  4. Development of Web-Based Learning Environment Model to Enhance Cognitive Skills for Undergraduate Students in the Field of Electrical Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakonpol, Thongmee; Ruangsuwan, Chaiyot; Terdtoon, Pradit

    2015-01-01

    This research aimed to develop a web-based learning environment model for enhancing cognitive skills of undergraduate students in the field of electrical engineering. The research is divided into 4 phases: 1) investigating the current status and requirements of web-based learning environment models. 2) developing a web-based learning environment…

  5. A Randomized Trial of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Children: Promoting Mindful Attention to Enhance Social-Emotional Resiliency in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semple, Randye J.; Lee, Jennifer; Rosa, Dinelia; Miller, Lisa F.

    2010-01-01

    Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy for children (MBCT-C) is a manualized group psychotherapy for children ages 9-13 years old, which was developed specifically to increase social-emotional resiliency through the enhancement of mindful attention. Program development is described along with results of the initial randomized controlled trial. We…

  6. Enhancing Cognitive and Social-Emotional Development through a Simple-to-Administer Mindfulness-Based School Program for Elementary School Children: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schonert-Reichl, Kimberly A.; Oberle, Eva; Lawlor, Molly Stewart; Abbott, David; Thomson, Kimberly; Oberlander, Tim F.; Diamond, Adele

    2015-01-01

    The authors hypothesized that a social and emotional learning (SEL) program involving mindfulness and caring for others, designed for elementary school students, would enhance cognitive control, reduce stress, promote well-being and prosociality, and produce positive school outcomes. To test this hypothesis, 4 classes of combined 4th and 5th…

  7. Does consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA enhance cognitive performance in healthy school-aged children and throughout adulthood? Evidence from clinical trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stonehouse, Welma

    2014-07-22

    Long-chain (LC) omega-3 PUFA derived from marine sources may play an important role in cognitive performance throughout all life stages. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the dominant omega-3 in the brain, is a major component of neuronal cell membranes and affects various neurological pathways and processess. Despite its critical role in brain function, human's capacity to synthesize DHA de novo is limited and its consumption through the diet is important. However, many individuals do not or rarely consume seafood. The aim of this review is to critically evaluate the current evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCT) in healthy school-aged children, younger and older adults to determine whether consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA improves cognitive performance and to make recommendations for future research. Current evidence suggests that consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA, particularly DHA, may enhance cognitive performance relating to learning, cognitive development, memory and speed of performing c